Music Video of the Day: Hollywood Ending by Starcrawler (2019, dir by Gilbert Trejo)


Since today is Oscar nomination day, I decided that today’s music video of the day should be about Hollywood.

Or, at the very least, it should have Hollywood in the title.

This video presents us with a Hollywood that is the exact opposite of Hollywood glitz.  It’s a Hollywood of cheap motels, too much makeup, and cigarette haze.  However, it’s also a Hollywood where you can actually find a working VHS player and I guess there’s something to be said for that.  This video is kind of depressing but kind of fun at the same time.  I have a weakness for the film’s combination of trash and satire.

“Marilyn Monroe” makes an appearance, as she certainly should.  When you’re reading about the Oscar nominations later today, just remember that Marilyn Monroe is both one of the most iconic Hollywood figures of all time and also someone who was never nominated for an Oscar.

(That said, she did appear in one of the greatest of the best picture winners, All About Eve.)

Enjoy!

Music Video of the Day: Suspicious Minds, covered by Computer Magic (2019, dir by Danz)


I was actually planning on featuring another Britney Spears video for today’s music video of the day but then I came across this cover of Suspicious Minds.

Let’s just start with the obvious.  I absolutely love this video.  According to video’s description on YouTube, this was shot on an iPhone.  The video has this wonderful sort of dream-like feel.  Some of that’s due to the song itself.  Some of that’s due to the fact that the majority of the video takes place in Las Vegas, which is like the most surreal city in America.  (There’s a reason why David Lynch set so much of Twin Peaks: The Return in Vegas.)  It all comes together to create a wonderfully hypnotic video, one that is both inviting and ominous at the same time.

The song itself is best-known as an Elvis song but it was actually originally written and performed by a songwriter named Mark James.  In 1969, after James’s version failed to chart, the song was handed over to Elvis and it quickly become on his signature hits.  Of course, you really can’t do anything Vegas-related without including a reference to Elvis.  I can’t remember if there were any Elvis impersonators on Twin Peaks but I do remember that you can spot a few in Saved By The Bell: Wedding in Las Vegas.

(And, of course, this bring us all back to Britney Spears, who will launching her second Vegas show on February 13th.  Everyone ends up in Vegas, where they get to hang out with my friends Jennifer and Xander.  Lucky them!)

Anyway, enjoy!

Music Video of the Day: Want You Back by Grey featuring Leon (2019, dir by Matt Komo)


So, this video last for about three minutes and I have to admit that I spent the first 2 and a half minutes feeling fairly skeptical about the whole thing.

I was like:

“Oh, they’re so in love.”

“Oh, now they’re fighting.”

“Oh, now, they’re looking at old pictures.”

“Oh now, they’re acting like kids again and everything’s okay.”

“Oh now, they’re driving together.”

“Oh now …. OH MY GOD!”

Yes, st the end of this video, the tragedy smashes into you like a freight train and I’m totally supportive of that.  The best short films — and that’s what a music video is — are always either extremely funny or extremely depressing.  Attempting to go for moderately amusing or thought-provoking doesn’t work.  A short film needs tragedy!

And that’s what we get here.  Suddenly, we understand why his old sweater is so important to her and maybe we feel a little bit guilty for rolling our eyes just a few seconds earlier.  As always, your mileage may vary.  Just remember to keep your eyes on the road.

Whenever I see a video like this, I always want to know what they’re fighting about.  These falling in and out of love montages always seem to have a scene where the couple suddenly starts yelling at each other in the kitchen and I always wonder what the exact details of the fight are about.  Is it that one of them wants to eat out while the other insists on cooking?  Is it because someone forgot to get Parmesan cheese the last time they went to the grocery store?  Whatever it is, they always seem to make up, which is a good thing.

Enjoy!

2018 in Review: Lisa’s 10 Favorite Songs of 2018


It’s time to continue to my look back at 2018 by listing my ten favorite songs of the year.  If you want to see an example of how varied our tastes are here at the Shattered Lens, compare my picks to Necromoonyeti’s picks for the top 20 albums of 2018.

See, that’s one thing that I like about this site.  We’ve all got our own individual tastes!

Anyway, here are my picks.  I’m going to post them now and then I’ll probably spend the rest of the week getting laughed at whenever I leave my office here at the Shattered Lens Bunker.  But that’s okay!  I love everyone!

  1. The Underground by Hardwell and Timmy Trumpet

2. Get Your Shirt by Underworld and Iggy Pop

3. Boom by Tiesto, Gucci Mane & Sevenn

4. Carribish by ADI

5. Like I Do by David Guetta, Martin Garrix & Brooks

6. There Was A Time by Kedr Livanskiy

7. The Middle by Zedd, Grey, and Maren Morris

8. One Kiss by Calvin Harris and Dua Lipa

9. I’m Upset by Drake

(I have to be honest.  This is one that I pretty much like exclusively because of the Degrassi-themed video.)

10. The Tired and The Hurt by Moby

That’s it for music!  Up next, either tonight or tomorrow, 10 good things I saw on television in 2018!

Lisa Looks Back At 2018:

  1. 10 Worst Films of 2018
  2. The Best of Lifetime
  3. The Best of SyFy
  4. Ten Favorite Novels
  5. Twelve Favorite Non-Fiction Books

 

Music Video of the Day: Stronger by Britney Spears (2000, dir by Joseph Kahn)


Britney Spears certainly did not invent the “I don’t need my cheating boyfriend to feel strong” genre of music but, over the past 20 years, she’s done a lot to popularize it.  Stronger was the first great “I don’t need you” song from Britney and I’ll admit right now that I’ve got the song memorized.  It’s a great one to sing along with.  “I’m not your property?”  Hell yeah!  “I don’t need nobody.”  Uhmmm, okay, the grammar could use some work but still …. you go, girl!

(Technically, that’s a double negative so, when Britney was singing “I don’t need nobody,” she was actually saying that she does need someone.  I used to frequently point that out, mostly because I was annoying like that.  “I don’t need anybody” may be the correct way to phrase the sentiment but nobody sounds better than anybody when it’s sung aloud.  Anyway, I’m just kind of rambling right now….)

As for the video, I guess the first question we should ask ourselves is, “Is Britney in the future?”  Now, seen today, the video might not seem extremely futuristic but, way back in 2000, this was like some serious Matrix shit going on.  Even in the future, though, Britney still has trouble finding a good man.  Upon finding her boyfriend cheating on her, Britney announces, “Whatever,” and then proceeds to drive a car and dance in a chair.  Apparently, Britney can use her magic chair to make people trip and fall.  Past, present, or future, you don’t want to get on Britney’s bad side.  Whenever I’m watch this video, I’m amazed by both how good a dancer Britney is and also how bad everyone else in the video is.  Watching everyone else dance in the spinning future night club, I was reminded of the infamous “Hanging Out With My Family” dance scene from Birdemic.

This video was directed by Joseph Kahn, who began his career in the 90s and who has directed videos for basically everyone.  He’s worked with both Britney Spears and Taylor Swift, which means that we’re pretty much living in Joseph Kahn’s world now, whether we realize it or not.

Enjoy!

 

Music Video of the Day: Lucky by Britney Spears (2000, dir by Dave Meyers)


Britney Spears wins an Academy Award!

Okay, it’ll probably never happen.  I mean, I’ve watched Crossroads more times than I care to admit but even I have to admit that Britney is a better singer than actress.  That said, we’ll always have the music video for Lucky, in which Britney does win an Oscar.  Well, actually, Britney plays an actress named Lucky who wins an Oscar but, even before the tabloids did their thing, it was obvious that Lucky and Britney were one in the same.  With the benefit of hindsight, there’s a poignant subtext to this song and this video.  Lucky was the first video that Britney did that centered around the struggle to balance fame with happiness.  It would not be the last.

Lucky was the second single to be released off of Oops! …. I Did It Again and it’s hard not to feel that both the song and the video were designed to let us know that, regardless of what we may have heard, Britney wasn’t always playing with hearts and getting lost in the game.  Much as how Sometimes was meant to counterbalance the more exuberant ….Baby One More Time, Lucky seems to be saying, “There’s more to Britney than what you’re reading in the tabloids!”

This video was directed by Dave Meyers, who has directed videos for …. well, just looking at his credits, it seems like he’s directed videos for almost everyone.  Kid Rock, Master P, Katy Perry, Ariana Grande, Jennifer Lopez, P!nk, Imagine Dragons, the fucking Dave Matthews Band …. he’s worked with them all.  In fact, he directed that video for Katy Perry’s Fireworks.  (Remember how sick we eventually all got of hearing that song?  Seriously, all through 2010, I dreaded watching any sort of “inspiring” video because I knew Fireworks would be played at some point.)  Anyway, Meyers has worked with Britney a few more times, directing the videos for Boys, Outrageous, and Radar.

Enjoy!

 

 

Song of the Day: Paradise Lost (by Gain)


ga-in paradise lost

The latest Song of the Day: K-Pop Edition is not just borderline NSFW, but should also piss off the very religious. From the video’s dark and very sexual imagery and choreography to it’s reinterpretation of some long-standing Biblical storytelling, Brown Eyed Girls’ member known as Gain released the song “Paradise Lost” from her 2015 solo album.

The song’s release had the usual fanfare but also reconfirmed her as one of K-Pop’s longstanding artist who pushed the boundaries of the very rigid and structured K-Pop industry where talent is trained and honed and controlled by untold numbers of corporate handlers.

“Paradise Lost” is a 4 minute-plus tour de force of a video that presents Gain in the role of Eve both while in the Garden of Eden and also after her expulsion from “paradise.” Whether it’s the elaborate satin and lace white wedding dress that obscures and hints at Eve’s repressed sexuality down to the black and white sequence where Gain is not just Even after her expulsion, but moving like the snake who tempted her and Adam to eat the fruit from the Tree of Knowledge.

While some will just focus on Gain’s sultry and smoldering beauty and the video’s sinuous and sexualized choreography, when the lyrics of the song and Gain’s powerful and emotionally devastating performance gets factored in the song and video become one of K-Pop’s great masterpieces that even the Western music world hasn’t seen since the days when Madonna experimented and explored her sexuality through her music and her videos in the early 1990’s.

So, come and take a seat and watch for the taboo thrill of the NSFW video, but stay for the message in the song and learn why sometimes it’s the non-believers who truly understands the true meaning behind the things we consider Biblical and sacred.