Monday, July 23, 2012

Lana Del Rey's Summertime Sadness - Video Review


A couple of weeks ago I reviewed Lana Del Rey's "National Anthem" video and praised it for being moody, evocative and for having something to say. The first two adjectives definitely apply to the latest visual (below) from my favourite indie-pop goddess but I'm not sure about the latter compliment. "Summertime Sadness" finds the perennially doomed and depressed diva on autopilot. Sure, the clip is absolutely gorgeous to look at. That's a given. But you could film this bitch doing the dishes in a hessian sack and it would be a work of art. Lana is beautiful, her style is impeccable and I adore the hazy, sepia palette she has made her own. However, film noir references and an overworked smoke machine don't quite cut it this time around.

The plot is simple but enticing. Lana and Jamie King (whatever happened to her film career?) play lesbian lovers, who spend a lot of time gazing at each other longingly before killing themselves. That storyline should compliment the song perfectly but the execution is lacking. "National Anthem" was overly ambitious and meandering but intelligent and beautifully constructed. This, on the other hand, looks cheap and rushed. The editing is sloppy, our heroine looks slightly demented and the connection between the lovers is about as convincing as a love scene between Jodie Foster and John Travolta. It's all just a little too obvious. If Saturday Night Live spoofed a Lana Del Rey video - the result would look a lot like this. But having said all that, it still shits on your fave.

Take the opening death scene. That's one of the most arresting moments in music video history. It's eerily beautiful and quintessentially Lana. Then there's the overwrought lesbian melodrama, which I love, and the ominous angles and lighting. Most importantly, "Summertime Sadness" has an impeccable soundtrack. This brooding anthem positively seethes with malcontent. Think Nancy Sinatra on LSD and a half a dozen downers. I've said it before but the 26-year-old has an incomparable knack for creating (a usually depressing) mood. My new obsession rolls into town this week and I'll be there front and centre, waiting Lana to belt out modern classics like this. I just hope she keeps the smoke machine at home.

7/10

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hello, I'm doing a research project about Lady Gaga, Madonna and Michael Jackson. Would you help me writing comments in my blog and voting in the surveys? Thank you very much.

www.thethroneofpopmusic.blogspot.com

John said...

I prefer this vid to National Anthem

Mike said...

No way. National Anthem > Summertime Sadness. At least when it comes to the visual aspect.

Trish said...

"the connection between the lovers is about as convincing as a love scene between Jodie Foster and John Travolta"

LMFAOOOOOOO

Mike you seriously make me laugh like no other. Can I just say, I really love you!!

Anyway, agree 100% on your review. The song is amazing, the concept for the video is great, but the execution is where it falters. There is no plot, and the relationship between the two lovers isn't really explored. My biggest complain is that nothing actually ever happens.

The opening death scene is definitely amazing, and the video really is beautiful. Shame she didn't put as much effort into it as she did for National Anthem.

Anonymous said...

perfect review!

Me said...

This fake pretentious talentless bitch needs to fuck off - she makes DULLta seem interesting, exciting and sexy.

Mike said...

I draw the line at DULLta comparisons. Take that back!

dishy said...

SHE IS FUCKING BRILLIANT AND GORGEOUS!

Anonymous said...

Awful. Her face looks like its on the verge of eating itself. What a grosski biatch.

Gerard said...

she's EVERYTHING!

Anonymous said...

I just want to love her forever and always she is. GOD. Period all her videos are original and perfect she's perfect