Friday, 5 August 2011

SP - Deconstruction: The All-American Rejects - Gives You Hell

Year: 2008
Audience: 15-24

"Gives You Hell" is a song by The All-American Rejects that was released as the lead single from their 2008 album, When the World Comes Down. The song became the band's first number-one song on the Mainstream Top 40 and Hot Adult Top 40 Tracks charts, and also peaked at number four on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Billboard announced at the end of 2009 that the song was the most played song of 2009 on their Top 40 Chart. (Source: Wikipedia)

The All-American Rejects' Gives You Hell is a mixture of both a performance based and a narrative based music video. The performnce element features mainly at the start and isnt heavily used throughout the music video. When these clips are used they contain footage of the band playing their instruments and the bands frontman lip-syncing the lyrics to the song. However the majority of the music video is a narrative based idea. They have cleverly mixed the band with the narrative idea behind the music video. All of the band members are in the narrative and performance parts of the video. Another clever thing they have done is they have made the frontman, who is also the main character in the narrative section in the music video, lip sync some of the lyrics aswell. Another thing that tells us that this is a narrative music video and not a concept one is that the lyrics link with what the actors and charatcers are doing. It is not a completely random idea and there is a stroyline that links in with the lyrics.

The first couple of shots show what things are to come in the music video. Firstly it shows us the setting is in America and this is probably because the band are from this country.  Secondly it shows us that we have two constrating houses and probably two contrasting people inside them. One of them is what you could call a normal home and the other is an extravagant one. Straight away we can predict that there is going to be conflict between the two of them. Also there is a clue in the title Gives You Hell and again it points the way to arguments and disagreements.

Just like with the first couple of shots we find out that there is a conflict between the two people. It is clever because it is the same person but with a different personality. The main character in the narrative section is actually the frontman but he is obviously playing as two different people. Firstly we have the normal yet rather nerdy charatcer. He lives a normal life in a normal home wwith a normal wife. On the other hand there is the band members. They live a rockstars life. They drink beer in the morning and have lots of tatoos. All the way through the music video it cuts between these two groups of people and how they are getting at each other. Just like in films there is a build up in tension throughout the whole film right untill the end where the tension spills over. Obviously as tension builds more and more shots are used which results in shot variation. There are extreme long shots used at the start to show the setting of the music video. It showed the two houses the two different people are living in. There are also panning shots, medium shots, close ups to name a few. As the more shots become introduced the editing and the pace of the video gets faster aswell. Shot variation and fast paced editing are common codes and conventions of music videos. It is vital for both of these to be used in this music video as it is like a very short film in a way.

Its not just a narrative music video
though. There are short and sharp burts of the band playing but mainly of the frontman lip-syncing at the start of the music video. It becomes less and less frequent as the music video goes on. These are the performance elements of the music video. The majoriy of the shots used for these performance sections of the music video are medium shots and close ups. This is because they want a variety of shots throughout the whole video and the audience want a close view of the their heroes singing the song not a long shot so you cant see them. The setting these performance shot are filmed at seem to be in a relaxed envronment in a living room or something and this fits in with the rest of the music videos. This is because most of the shots are inside a house and it seems to flow well between the peroformance and narrative section of the music video.

The All-American Rejects released a full performance music video and of the song Gives You Hell and here it is:

However here is the full narrative and performance music video Gives You Hell by The All-American Rejects:

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