Music Video of the Day: The Perfect Drug by Nine Inch Nails (1997, dir. Mark Romanek)


First things first, the music video is there despite what it looks like. Somebody just decided to get clever and put the YouTube video-has-been-removed pic as the thumbnail. If it actually gives you the error message after clicking on it, then I’m sorry. I’m also sorry that the last few seconds are missing. However, I can’t agree with a YouTube commenter about that problem. The music video doesn’t fall apart without them. I do have to agree and disagree with another commenter. This song will indeed wash your ears clean of Fifth Harmony’s song Work From Home, but I don’t see anything wrong with that music video. They are just very passionate about equating construction equipment with sex.

Meanwhile, over in the music video for The Perfect Drug, Trent Reznor is reminding me of why I bothered to buy the soundtrack for Lost Highway (1997) back when it came out. I didn’t care about any of the other songs. I just wanted The Perfect Drug. I wasn’t even a fan of Nine Inch Nails. I just fell in love with the song. My favorite part is the drum solo near the end. The music video is what lured me in with its’ cold Victorian look that was a beautiful and haunting representation of the music of Nine Inch Nails. I am sure that bit in the hedge maze was meant to be a reference to The Shining (1980) to fit with the theme of madness/obsession. I could have featured this music video anytime, but I figured October was as good a time as any.

This music video brings back a lot of familiar faces from earlier music videos I have spotlighted.

Danielle Cagaanan was an executive producer on the music video. I can’t find a whole lot of information on her credit-wise. I can find a bunch of other information. She must have gotten married because she now goes by the name Danielle Peretz. I also found out that back in 1994, she accepted an award for Spike Jonze being that year’s top director. You can even see a picture of her here with the director of the music video for Green Day’s Longview. According to American Photo magazine in 1995, she gave Spike Jonze his start with MTV. I also found her Linkedin page. It looks like she founded her own company this year that helps youth with cognitive challenges find jobs. Back during the making of this video, she was near the end of her 6 years at Satellite Films/Propaganda Films before hopping over to MCA Records.

June Guterman is back. She is the one who produced the music video for Lil’ Devil by The Cult.

Jeff Cronenweth is new. He has shot some music videos, but he’s probably best known for his work on other films like Fight Club (1999), The Social Network (2010), The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011), and Gone Girl (2014).

Robert Duffy is back. He edited this as well as Hella Good by No Doubt, Closer by Nine Inch Nails, and Losing My Religion by R.E.M–among others. He has also worked on numerous Tarsem Singh films.

Tom Foden was the production designer. He did the same for Closer by Nine Inch Nails. He has worked on numerous Tarsem Singh films. He has one credit that jumps out at me. He was apparently an assistant art director on Playboy: Kerri Kendall – September 1990 Video Centerfold (1990), which was directed by Michael Bay. I would think that was a fake credit on IMDb, but Michael Bay did direct music videos back then. One of those music videos being I Touch Myself by Divinyls. Also, it really isn’t that uncommon for major directors to get their start in porn. Abel Ferrara’s first feature film was a porno.

Enjoy!

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