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How Wagner and his musical legacy reverberate at the cineplex

June 16, 2010 |  4:30 pm

Anyone paying attention to the arts scene knows that Wagner's "Ring" cycle is now being staged by Los Angeles Opera. But even if you haven't made it over to the Music Center, there's no doubt that you've been exposed to the composer's music and influence.

In words and with video clips here, Jon Burlingame looks at 10 great ways film has used bits and pieces of Wagner's compositions. Most memorable is the helicopter scene, above, from "Apocalypse Now."

Francis Ford Coppola's 1979 film contains, Burlingame writes, perhaps the most famous modern-day use of Wagner's "Ride of the Valkyries," which opens Act 3 of the "Ring's" "Die Walküre."

And in this story, Burlingame tells why Wagner is considered by many to be the man who invented movie music.

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