ROBYN “LOVE KILLS” A TREATMENT BY LIAM HEDLEY ON BEHALF OF Z RECORDSLiam HedleyHartlepool Sixth Form CollegeBrinkburn, Blakelock RoadHartlepool, TS25 5PFliamfirstname.lastname@example.org
CONCEPTThe themes underlying this video will illustrate the lyrics of the song in a metaphorical sense.“Love Kills” talks about love and relationships hurting, but there is also mention of StockholmSyndrome – a psychological condition in which hostages develop empathy for their captors.As such, Robyn will assume the role of woman who is in the process of exiting a relationship,but feels constrained by her lover and the concept of affection. This idea arose from Robyn’sprevious video “Handle Me”, where she is seen inside several boxes; it will serve as anintertextual reference. Creative camera and editing techniques, lighting and characteristicjerky performances of the actor will play a huge role, ensuring a quirky video that matchesboth the genre and star image of the artist.PERFORMANCE&NARRATIVE
As in all her videos, Robyn’s performance will be key in that of bringing her quirky personalityand confidence to the end product, matching a song that is unique in its sound. A conceptualvideo intertwining performance and narrative, the lyrics need to be delivered with realcompassion and meaning in order to convey the emotion behind them. This will be crucial tothe narrative, which will explore five different scenarios, based on what I feel are the differentaspects of finding it difficult to walk away from a relationship, in the context of myinterpretation of the lyrics.These five scenarios will be “constraint”, “conflict”, “oblivion”, “escape” and “freedom”. Most ofthese will be filmed in the studio, and "different approaches to camera shots, lighting, propsand set-ups etc. will convey the meaning and tone of the scenario in question.Constraint: This segment will represent Robyn feeling trapped by her relationship andunable to take herself away from such a commitment. It will rely predominantly on camera,editing and lighting (see this section).Conflict:This segment will literally illustrate the title of the song “Love Kills”. It will showRobyn in the studio rolling around on the floor and awkwardly jumping around the room,holding a giant cardboard cutout of a heart as if she is “fighting” with it. This was inspired bythe video for the 2001 song “Another Chance” by Roger Sanchez.Escape:In the escape segment I want to have a series shots of Robyn simply walking tothe beat of the music. This will amplify the audio and reflect the singer walking away from arelationship, however jump cuts will be used to reflect this being a complex process. I want tofilm this in a built-up street, as this will make the mise-en-scene interesting. BittersweetSymphony influenced me.Freedom:This section will entail Robyn dancing rigorously to the music in a spontaneousfashion, being a little less jerkier and more smoother with her movements to reflect being free.She will be happy and positive as a character here. A performancesimilar to the one in hervideo Call Your Girlfriend would be great.Disjuncture / Car: An additional non-performance set-up will feature shots from a carwindow/windscreen to reflect travelling away from a lover in the instrumentals of the song.This was inspired by Snow Patrol’s video for "Open Your Eyes", and furthermore I plan to atpoints superimpose Robyn’s performance from the Freedom and Escape segments over thetop of this footage – rather like Madonna’s video for "Ray of Light"". I will shoot this footage at
night in built-up areas as I feel it will complement the electronic nature of the song and thelighting I plan to use for the Constraint segment.Oblivion: This segmentwill be filmed in a busy streetwhere Robyn is walkingslowly, but passers-by attwice the speed to show a “cold hard world” of feeling isolated and alone – again trapped in arelationship.In all, Robyn will need to give strong visual performances throughout to show a realconnection to the lyrics. Her characteristic jerky dancing is key in most set-ups, but Robyn isnot afraid to just be herself and this is exactly what this video needs.CAMERA& EDITING
It will be essential to use a variety of camera shots of different depths, distances and anglesthroughout the video in order to make it visually interesting for the viewer. Furthermore, theneed for several set-ups reflects the fast tempo of the song where many cuts/thought beatswill need to be made. Much variety is needed.Constraint:This section will consist of tightly framed extreme close-ups to show beingconstrained (and reveal the “star image”), which will also be emphasized in the facialexpressions and movements of the singer. She will look apprehensive, but also jumpy - jumpcuts will be used here. The camera will zoom out to a wide-angle long shot when “Stockholm”syndrome is mentioned, showing sympathy combined with the lighting. These shots willoccasionally pan down and be interspaced with ones of her body covered in fairy lights.Robyn will need to lip-sync in these shots.Conflict:A general variety of camera shots will be used here. I really want to try and playaround with focusing here; shallow focus, deep focus, and pulling between the two. I want totry and latch onto the trend of videos going out of focus, showing blurry lights – a pleasingaesthetic.Also, I will try and use much camera movement to reflect the erratic nature ofRobyn’s. The singer will need to lip-sync.Escape:I want to include lots of shots of Robyn’s feet here, showing how she is walking tothe beat of the music, as well as filming from in front and behind the singer. Split screen couldthen be used to show the Robyn walking in two directions. Jump cuts will play a huge rolehere. I was really inspired by yet another Madonna video – Live to Tell. It uses lots of pansaround the singer’s head and I really want to try this technique to emphasise Robyn’s facialexpressions. As such, Robyn will remain looking at the camera or straight forwards. Overall"Bittersweet Symphony" influenced this idea. Robyn will yet again need to lip-sync here.Freedom:A general variety of camera shots will be used here yet again. The camera willmove around with Robyn to reflect her movement. Only one or two shots will be used. Thiswill be used as the “ritual celebration” at the end of the song. Robyn will need to lip-sync here.
Disjuncture / Car:I will shoot this section through a combination of long shots from acar windscreen, and low angle shots from a car window. This will make the world seem bigand imposing – intimidating now that Robyn is entering back into the real world. I will try anduse a fish eye lens to do this also. Obviously, there will be no lip-syncing here.Oblivion: This will be achieved a long shot, where Robyn is centrally placed with peoplewalking past her on either side. She will walk very slowly, and the footage will be sped up sothat she is walking at normal speed and the others twice-as-fast. There will be no lip-syncinghere.LIGHTINGStudio lighting will be used extensively in the video given the shooting locations. I want tomainly use purple tones as I feel this will complement the nature of the song well, andcreative quite dark connotations.In the constraint segment the shot will be especially dark, showing only some of Robyn’s facedue to disco lights flashing on her. She will also be covered in fairy lights, to emphasise theconstraint theme (this was inspired by the use of fairy lights in Rihanna’s“We Found Love”) Asthe camera zooms out, the light will grow stronger to reveal Robyn’s full body.DANCEIn typical Robyn style, I want to utilise her characteristic jerky dance movements as seen herein Dancing On My Own. This looks always looks semi-spontaneous and complements thebeat of the song well thus I want to incorporate it. It always works well with jump cuts that Iam planning to include. Her typical style includes twitching her head and shoulders, waving her
arms around and stomping her feet. The only performance shots where this not required will beFreedom, where a more smooth form of dance will be used, and Oblivion where Robyn will justwalk.