The establishing shot of the music video shows all the band members in performing position which typically shows the front man stood closer to the camera while the other band members further back have less lighting on them which makes them seem part of the background. This immediately lets the audience know he’s the singer of the band and makes him seem most important. The shot shows them performing which makes their music seem more legitimate as the audience can clearly see they’re professional musicianswho play their own music. Also, the shot clearly shows the scene in which the narrative aspect of the video will also be shown, showing a link between the story the lyrics portray and their video itself.
On the audiences first glimpse of the protagonists love interest , the camera shows a close up of her facewhich shows her beauty but also portrays her as innocent; her hair is very fair and curly and also pinned away from her face so the audience can clearly see it. She also wears very little make-up, which makes her look very youthful. Her skin tone is also very light and she wears red lip-stick; this tied in with her old fashioned hair style and clothing sets the time for the music video which is shown to be set in the late 1800s. The composition of the shot uses the rule of thirds which places her off centre and reveals a shallow focus in the background that shows her to be the main focus in the shot. She is shown to be looking beyond the camera in a ‘day-dream’ like pose making her seem more interested in something else and disinterested with what she’s doing at this point in the video.
Throughout the video the shot in which shows the band performing is frequently shown with is typical of this rock genre of music as is shows it’s legitimately their music. Whilst performing the singer, Brandon Flowers, often makes references to the lyrics of the song by using hand gestures; at this point in the song the lyrics say ‘while he’s having a smoke and she’s taking a drag’. As this is said, he then makes hand movements to suggest ‘having a drag’ of a cigarette which makes him look more involved with the song itself, and makes his personal performance look more interesting. All the band members are shown to be wearing suits which goes with the setting of the video, and although they are all wearing a different style, they are all wearing a similar colour theme. This makes them look part of a band, and not just musicians performing behind a singer.
This shot again conveys her innocence as she is posed very relaxed, with flopped hands and slouching, making her seem very child-like. She also stands out with her pale skin, hair and clothing against the dark and dim background making her seem like an important character and yet again the main focus of the shot as the audience will immediately look to her. This shot also shows intertexuality bylinking the video to the fairytale of snow white which again portrays her to be naive as snow white eats the poisonous apple, and this character catches the apple the stranger throws at her, and does what he says ignoring the fact he’s portrayed as ‘evil’. The shot is taken as the lyrics ‘it was only a kiss’ are sung, thus adding to naivety of the character and her actions; it places her within the narrative of the song.
This mediumshot places the front man of the band from the performance into the actual narrative making the song seem personal to him as the other band members aren’t involved with the story itself at all. This would also suggest to the audience that he wrote the song himself and has personal experience with a situation based around the narrative. The girl has taken him behind a curtain hidden from the rest of the men in the room, making him seem special to her as the other men she was told to be with she accompanied in public yet Brandon she kept a secret showing ‘forbidden love’; both their smiles towards each other show the feeling is mutual. The curtain in the background is a deep red colour which symbolises their love as it completely covers the background behind them.
A close up is shown of the couples faces as the look towards each other giving intense eye-contact which connotes ‘love’; this ties in with the visual metaphor in the background as sparks fly around them when fireworks literally go off when they’re with each other. This is often made reference to in typical scenes of romance and feelings of love. In this shot the background colours go with the bluish tint on her face and glowing hair, making her look more suited for this background then the previous scenes, which makes her seem happier here.
This mediumshot shows her running back into the arms of the man who controls her giving the audience the impression that this is what she’s used to proving her naive nature which links to her child-like image. However, her see-through dress showing her underwear contradicts this image, and makes it seem like what she’s being make to look like and do, isn’t in her nature. Although she runs away from Brandon to this man, she still keeps her eyes fixed on him showing her split feelings between the two. She again stands out from the rest of the image in her light clothes and hair that almost show her at a glow, showing her to be very out of place and like she doesn’t belong in this scene.
A extreme close up again shows the band’s front man to be using his hands to act out what the lyrics are saying to confirm to the audience the personal effect the song has on him. At this part of the video the lyrics say ‘and I just can’t look it’s killing me’ which gives the audience a sense of empathy toward Brandon as he covers his face and a close up shows him to revealhavinga strong distressed emotion as he sings the song. The audience are able to assume he has had a previous experience with a partner cheating due to this. The camera makes him the focus point of this shot to really emphasis his emotion, as he is shown clear and the background is out of focus (blurred).
This long shot shows the ladies in the video (including the main characters love interest) dancing in sync, which paired with the late 1800s setting and French-esc style of the shot gives a Moulin Rouge theme to the video. This gives the audience a clear impression of the girl’s intentions in the video and shows a pastiche to the videos narrative. The main girl in the video is again shown to stand out as her clothes are considerably lighter then the other girls in the video; this means the audiences eyes are immediately drawn to her as she performs again connoting her main role in the storyline.
The last frame of the song shows the front man walking away from her after feeling portrayed by her lack of choice (between him and the other man), which links to the lyrics of the song and again makes them seem very personal to him and gives the audience the impression that they were written by him from experience. In this last shot she is shown in dark light and doesn’t stand out from the background like in all the previous shots, showing a new equilibrium to the narrative.