LANA DEL REY American singer songwriter Elizabeth Woolridge Grant introduced the world to her stage persona Lana Del Rey in 2010 with herself titled debut album Lana Del Rey a.k.a Lizzy Grant. But she did not reach her high level of commercial success until 2012 when she realised her second and official chart topping album born to die. Lana Del Rey is known and loved for her indie pop/alternative sound that is fused with element of hip hop and dark gothic lyrics. This makes Lana Del Rey a visually intriguing artist, as she conveys these themes into her music videos. This is evident in music videos such as video games, born to die, national anthem and most obviously video games, as all videos consist of an emotionally upsetting narrative.
YOANN LEMOINE Lana Del Rey worked with French music video director, graphic designer, and musician Yoann Lemoine twice (on music video for Born To Die and Blue Jean), whose known for his eccentric style that has an unclear narrative and hidden meanings, shown in such videos as take care by drake and Moby ‘Mistake, but Yoann Lemoine illustrated this technique best in music video blue jeans.
CAMERA WORKThe camera work in the music video for blue jeans is as sensual as the song itselfand the concept of the music video. The majority of the shots within the musicvideo are close-ups mid shots, these intimate and close shots are done in order toemphasise both the desperately clingy and affectionate lyrics (such as “I will loveyou till the end of time, I would wait a million years” and “You fit me better thanmy favourite sweater”). There are also long shots in the video, which are used toshow the bazaar, yet glamorous scenery within the location of the music video.
GENRE CHARACTERISTICS Lana Del Rey’s music genre can be describes as indie-pop or alternative, either way, her music video for blue jeans follows the genre characteristics of both very well, as it consists of a complex and original narrative (rather than the video to follow the lyrics very basically, they took a unique approach and filmed the majority of the video in a swimming pool) and most alternative videos strives in being different and run away from having music videos that follow the lyrics very simply. The video of consists of the one element most modern commercially successful pop genre music video have, ‘sex’, as the video is very sexy and features some explicit innuendo
RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN LYRICS AND VISUALSWhat makes this music videounique and eccentric, is it’sindistinct yet noticeablerelationship between the videoand the lyrics. The music videoseems to aim to illustrate thelyrics in a metaphorical manner,although the visuals within thevideo do not match the lyrics in a This scene of the video illustrates Lana Del Reyway that’s obvious, there are being drowned by the man she is singing about,some parts of the video that exemplifies the lyrics that state ‘I will love youexpress the lyrics meanings e.g. till the end of time’.‘You were sorta punk rock’, these lyrics are expresses within the music video as thelead actor/model has a punk rock look to him, further example are shown in suchlyrics as ‘Then they took you away- stole you out of my life’, during this part of thesong, Lana Del Rey is shown being drowned in the pool after being pulled awayviolently from a passionate kiss, which expresses the ‘took you away’ part of thelyrics.
RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN MUSIC AND VISUALS (REPRESENTATON) The song ‘Blue Jeans’ is a mid-tempo and almost slow track, and for the most part, the visuals match this as the movement and editing pace (cuts) are fairly Mid- tempo/slow and mellow part of song with slow-moving, however, slow and mellow cuts and visuals the track changes tempo speed in the middle very briefly, and the cuts within this brief moment become dramatically rapid, and the visuals become more intense, violent and action- packed. Faster tempo part of song features more dramatic and rapid visuals and cuts.
CLOSE-UPS OF THE ARTIST AND STAR IMAGELana Del Rey is a commercial artist who faces a lot of competition in the market. And soher record label aim to amiss her from other commercial female artist by giving her anunique, alternative and unconventional sound and image, which they try to express withinher music and visual aspects. This unique image is quite Morden-day bohemian/urbanvibe, with a lifeless tone, this is expressed within the music video throughout, as themusic video is black and white (which can exemplify a lifeless nature) and the quite dark,twisted and violent narrative to the video (the drowning and strangling of the artist). Thisvideo is not the only example of the image Lana Del Rey’s record label is trying to sell, asother music videos such as ‘born to die’ and ‘summertime sadness’ all consist of theseglamourized depressing and dark themes and images.
NARRITIVEThe narrative of the video is very surreal (rather than showing footage of Lana Del Rey in adepressed state longing for her long lost love, which would have been more predictableand over-used), the director of this music video wanted to the play and expend on thelyrics of the song to create a music video that is more artistic, original, interesting and givethe audience a ‘more that meets the eye’ effect.
VIDEO STYLE AND ICONOGRAPHY/ MISE EN SCENEThis music video features a lot of iconic images and themes, most of which relate tothe song. This music video seems to be inspired by old Hollywood, which is conveyedby the classy black and white theme and scenery, and also the model who is styledafter major old Hollywood star James dean (who is mentioned in the song). Theactor/ model used in this music video is Bradley Soileau, who has starred previouslyin Lana Del Rey’s ‘born to die’ music video, using familiarity in her music videos, Lanacreates iconic and memorable statements .
INTERTEXTUALITY/ VOYEURISMVoyeurism and intertextuality can be used in order to sell the artistsimage or music (as sex sells), or (in this case) it can be used to make astatement. some scene within this music video are quite vulgar andsexual, but this is not intended to promote a sex-like-vibe, but only tomatch the eccentric and amusing yet shocking elements to the musicvideo narrative and themes.