Taking notice of the truly exceptional sonic wizardry of ‘Love & Mercy’

Sound has been an essential part of filmmaking for nearly ninety years, yet is the art and the craft of sound mixing and sound editing is not especially appreciated by modern cinephiles, including this writer. But the recent release of Bill Pohland’s double-sided Brian Wilson biopic Love & Mercy caused me to stand to stand up and take notice of the film’s truly exception sonic wizardry, which uplifts the film, enhancing the story and giving a voice to the characters’ souls, which too often are unable to speak for themselves.

The most obvious use of sound in a movie about the life of Beach Boys songwriter Brian Wilson, the musical genius behind countless hits and the milestone album Pet Sounds, is obviously going to be in the music, and Love & Mercy does not disappoint there. The film begins with credits set to the pleasing tones of mid-‘60s Beach Boys pop-rock,
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