Music Video of the Day: Take A Chance On Me by ABBA (1978, dir. Lasse Hallström)


When I started out doing this retrospective, I wanted to get at least as far as this music video. Unfortunately, after 37 ABBA, and ABBA related music videos, I don’t have anything grand to say about it. Still, I can talk about some of the interesting aspects of it.

When you start it up, you are immediately greeted with The Brady Bunch split screen.

Note the crazy eyes on Frida. She does this several times during the video. Why? I don’t know. Why does she jump around at one point?

Maybe that’s jumping for joy.

Take another look at the screenshot of the beginning of the video. Do you see how Agnetha and Frida aren’t doing the same thing? It’s a small detail, but an apt way to describe this music video is that it is all about details. You’ll notice that throughout the video, they are usually doing their own thing instead of carefully moving into certain positions. You still get some of that with shots like this one below.

But you get a lot of shots like this one below where they are doing different things.

While I’m bringing that up, take a look at this shot.

The mark to tell Agnetha and Frida where to stop is visible at Agnetha’s foot. Mistake? Maybe it is since you can also see that the far left has visible black area where the backdrop didn’t reach. You don’t see the mark again in the video. I like to think of it as something left in intentionally by Hallström.

The video is made up of a lot of elements from previous music videos, but there are little changes. The jump cuts are the most obvious. In general, the editing in this video is much more like what you would expect from music videos that would arrive with the birth of MTV.

Another interesting one is changing up the singing head-shot of Agnetha. We get the standard one early on that we are familiar with from videos like SOS. Then it is followed with one where we get Agnetha sweeping upwards from the lower right-hand corner of the screen to do her bit before swinging her head backwards to reveal that spotlight we saw in Money, Money, Money.

One of my favorite things is when Benny springs up from his seat to chase after Frida.

Another thing about the video is that we get a little cutaway to a part where Frida is listening to music while Benny reads a magazine.

Its inclusion ties together a lot of the elements the audience would be familiar with from other ABBA music videos.

Something that isn’t familiar are the the camera movements. You can see the camera move in quickly to follow Frida to Benny sitting on a chair.

You also get shots where the camera moves upwards, and visa versa. It’s interesting how it will come down to, and move towards either Agnetha or Frida. This also happens the other way around as it returns to a shot of both of them.

The last thing I want to bring up is that you’ll notice that there are numerous times Agnetha turns around, or comes close to doing so. The video ends with the back of her head. I love it.

I think that’s it. Enjoy this landmark music video!

ABBA retrospective:

  1. Bald Headed Woman by The Hep Stars (1966, dir. ???)
  2. En Stilla Flirt by Agnetha & ??? (1969, dir. ???) + 8 Hootenanny Singers Videos From 1966
  3. Tangokavaljeren by Björn (1969, dir. ???)
  4. Vårkänslor (ja, de’ ä våren) by Agnetha & Björn (1969, dir. ???)
  5. Titta in i men lilla kajuta by Björn (1969, dir. ???)
  6. Nu Ska Vi Vara Snälla by Björn & Agnetha (1969, dir. ???)
  7. Finns Det Flickor by Björn & Sten Nilsson (1969, dir. ???)
  8. Nu Ska Vi Opp, Opp, Opp by Agnetha (1969, dir. ???)
  9. Det Kommer En Vår by Agnetha (1969, dir. ???)
  10. Beate-Christine by Björn (1969, dir. ???)
  11. En Stilla Flirt by Agnetha & ??? (1969, dir. ???) + 8 Hootenanny Singers Videos From 1966
  12. Att Älska I Vårens Tid by Frida (1970, dir. ???)
  13. Min Soldat by Frida (1970, dir. ???)
  14. Söderhavets Sång by Frida (1970, dir. ???)
  15. Ring, Ring by ABBA (1973, dir. Lasse Hallström)
  16. Ring, Ring by ABBA (1973, dir. ???)
  17. Love Isn’t Easy (But It Sure Is Hard Enough) by ABBA (1973, dir. ???)
  18. Waterloo by ABBA (1974, dir. Lasse Hallström)
  19. Hasta Mañana by ABBA (1974, dir. ???)
  20. I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do by ABBA (1975, dir. Lasse Hallström)
  21. I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do by ABBA (1975, dir. ???)
  22. Bang-A-Boomerang by ABBA (1975, dir. Lasse Hallström)
  23. SOS by ABBA (1975, dir. Lasse Hallström)
  24. Mamma Mia by ABBA (1975, dir. Lasse Hallström)
  25. Knowing Me, Knowing You by ABBA (1976, dir. ???)
  26. Tropical Loveland by ABBA (1976, dir. ???)
  27. When I Kissed The Teacher by ABBA (1976, dir. ???)
  28. Tiger by ABBA (1976, dir. ???)
  29. Money, Money, Money by ABBA (1976, dir. ???)
  30. Money, Money, Money by ABBA (1976, dir. Lasse Hallström)
  31. Fernando by ABBA (1976, dir. Lasse Hallström) + Spanish Version
  32. Dancing Queen by ABBA (1976, dir. Lasse Hallström)
  33. That’s Me by ABBA (1977, dir. Lasse Hallström)
  34. Knowing Me, Knowing You by ABBA (1977, dir. Lasse Hallström)
  35. The Name Of The Game by ABBA (1977, dir. Lasse Hallström)
  36. Thank You For The Music/Gracias Por La Música by ABBA (1977/1978, dir. Lasse Hallström)
  37. One Man, One Woman by ABBA (1978, dir. Lasse Hallström)
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8 responses to “Music Video of the Day: Take A Chance On Me by ABBA (1978, dir. Lasse Hallström)

  1. Pingback: Music Video of the Day: Eagle by ABBA (1978, dir. Lasse Hallström) | Through the Shattered Lens

  2. Pingback: Music Video of the Day: Summer Night City by ABBA (1978, dir. Lasse Hallström) | Through the Shattered Lens

  3. Pingback: Music Video of the Day: Estoy Soñando by ABBA (1979, dir. Lasse Hallström) | Through the Shattered Lens

  4. Pingback: Music Video of the Day: Chiquitia by ABBA (1979, dir. ???) | Through the Shattered Lens

  5. Pingback: Music Video of the Day: Does Your Mother Know by ABBA (1979, dir. Lasse Hallström) | Through the Shattered Lens

  6. Pingback: Music Video of the Day: Voulez-Vous by ABBA (1979, dir. Lasse Hallström) | Through the Shattered Lens

  7. Pingback: Music Video of the Day: Honey Honey by ABBA (1974, dir. ???) | Through the Shattered Lens

  8. Pingback: Music Video of the Day: Gimmie! Gimmie! Gimmie! (A Man After Midnight) by ABBA (1979, dir. Lasse Hallström) | Through the Shattered Lens

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