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Music video narrative analysis


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Published in: Entertainment & Humor
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Music video narrative analysis

  1. 1. Music Video Narrative Analysis- Beyoncé: Irreplaceable The music video begins with a close up of ‘whom we assume is the main part in the video’ hands. She is filing her nails, suggesting she is a female who takes good care of her self. At this moment of time there is no backing track, however there is the diegetic sound of her filing her nails which causes tension. The camera then jumps to a medium close up revealing Beyoncé and a male, it is clear to the audience that there is tension between the two as Beyoncé looks angry with the male, and slightly off. A long shot is then used to display the setting of the music video. This reveals what looks like a mansion;the props such as grad lights and the colours of gold and brown indicate wealth. There is an introduction of 19 seconds in this particular music during this time the storyline is quickly introduced. Many of Beyoncé’s music videos follow this set up such as ‘If I was a boy’. Andrew Goodwin’s theory of Narrative and performance is relative in this video just to the story told. I believe this shot is the first relevant shot. Beyoncé looks straight into the camera; at this point no lyrics are played. Due to this it has become evident the video is about Beyoncé. The track now starts to play, the beat if quite respective in the first part of the song. The close up of Beyoncé’s face shows her following a male around the room with her eyes. She is portrayed as emotionless.The shot switches to a medium shot, showing the males leaving. This is when the sound track starts.
  2. 2. When the lyrics ‘To the left to the left’ is played Beyoncé points to her left. This is an action match with the lyrics. Beyoncé is filing her nails, this suggests she is planning to go out or trying to impress someone. Girls usually do things like this when they are bored. This could connote that Beyoncé is bored of a situation or not interested in the current action that is taking place. The next shot clarifies the narrative of the music video as the male lead is leaving the house with a box, which we previously saw himpack. The house that is in the background of the shot suggests the wealth that the character in the video is leaving. Whilst he is walking out the house Beyoncé clarifies why he is doing so. ‘ ‘So go ahead and get gone and call up that chick and see if she's home, Oops, I bet ya thought that I didn't know what did you think I was putting you out for’. The male has been cheating. Beyoncé is presented at this point as a fierce independent female, who doesn’t seem fazed by the current situation. She moves away from him, and rejects his affection, suggesting she is over it. As the tempo of the song starts to increase Beyoncé’s mood starts to change.
  3. 3. The shot that is next significant in the narrative is this. Beyoncé seems to be getting ready for a night out. This is a typical thing girls do after a break up. She looks as if she is making a effort for something or someone however at this point it is not 100% clear, however the lyrics do hint that Beyoncé will soon have another male. Laura Mulveys theory of the male gaze is relevant is Beyoncé is dressed in seductive clothing. Young girls see Beyoncé as a role model, they have a personal identity connection with the singer this video makes girls looks up to the star and encourage them to have aspirations to look, perform and act like Beyoncé. In this particular shot the lyrics are matched with the action that is provided on screen. ‘Rolling her around in the car that I bought you’. Beyoncé is slouched on an expensive car, which again highlights the wealth. This is a key element in a Pop/R&B music video. This sort of music video would typically be targeted at the ABC1 group, but due to Beyoncé’s diversity she targets C2DE social groups to.
  4. 4. The next shot allows the audience to see Beyoncé with a all girl band, this suggests boys are not needed. Again pointing to the left with the lyric ‘To the left, to the left’ is played. Beyoncé seems happy showing no remorse of losing her boyfriend, this links in with her star image of ‘girl power’, this again brings in girls personal identity connection with the singer. She has finally got rid of the boy; she takes all her things away from him suggesting she has the power over him In this particular shot all the lyrics thatBeyoncé has been singing such as “I can have another you in minute, matter of fact he’ll be here in a minute” are shown as another male enters her house. This clarifies what Beyoncé has been talking about and getting ready for throughout the whole video. She again looks well groomed and happy with the current situation.
  5. 5. The narrative of this music video is pretty evident from start to finish many of the lyrics Beyoncé acts out, other are shown in the background or the setting. This music video runs backs up Beyoncé’s star image. This could be a reason for the director to create a music video that fits the lyrics perfectly. Beyoncé has a wide audience due to her incredible success and diversity; males look to her videos to indulge in her beauty. Where females look up to the star again for her beauty but the way she sings what many girls are feeling, she is the ultimate girl role model, making the star popular with adults to as they enjoy there children indulging in something that will benefit them further in life. The min-en-scene used throughout the video complements the song perfectly; she is surrounded by wealth and is content without a male in her life. Beyoncé often avoids stereotypes of typical females this is evidenced throughout video, by her taking on the bread winner role.