Tuesday, March 1, 2011

"Born This Way:" The Saga of Gaga Continues

Now that the Oscars are over, lets move on to the other pressing issues in today's pop culture. Specifically, yesterday's premiere of Lady Gaga's new music video short film "Born This Way." I'm sure a lot of you have seen this already, but if you haven't (or just want to see it again), here it is:

Obviously, Lady Gaga has elevated music videos into a high art again, and I wholeheartedly believe that nobody makes videos like her, even though practically everyone's trying. But I haven't been really impressed by anything she's done since the Grand Guignol-ian "Bad Romance" video. "Telephone" was campy fun but had a completely unnecessary prologue, and "Alejandro" was well-intentioned but poorly executed. So I personally was hoping for something wildly original from the "Born This Way" video, something that would remind me of how wonderfully over-the-top Gaga can be.

Did I see that here? Well, yes and no. There was another goofy prologue, this time building up some sort of mythology about Mother Monster and Evil and fate of the world and what-have-you. All of that was ultimately inconsequential to the video once the music got started. And lets be honest for a minute: Lady Gaga is not a strong dancer, and here as in her other videos the editing masks how simple the choreography really is. But then there's the actual music part to the video, which certainly doesn't disappoint. I know a lot of fans were on the fence about how straightforward the song is compared to everything she's done so far, but I think its a solid move that shows that she's not content with just making the same song and same album over and over again. She's continuing to grow as a musician, and that makes me more excited about her upcoming album.

But back to the video: visually its a kaleidoscope of compelling, vaguely-fantasy images, with homages to Madonna and, oddly enough, Terry Gilliam's Brazil. Its certainly Gaga's busiest video to date, with enough things going on to make your head spin. And it plays like an acid trip by way of Hunter S. Thompson, a unique experience that doesn't quite add up to a legendary video, but certainly a great one.

What did everyone else think?

1 comment:

DEZMOND said...

I agree with you that BAD ROMANCE still remains her masterpiece. After that she kinda became overly dark and unnecessary shocking. Shocking people just to shock them. I still love her, and she still is the rare artist in the age of mediocre pop tarts (Rihanna, Katy Perry, Kesha) but she needs to put more colours in her videos and her next one mustn't be as dark as ALEJANDRO and BORN THIS WAY.
I love the end in BORN THIS WAY with animated white gloves on her hands :)