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September 9th, 2013
Miley Cyrus’ video was just dropped moments ago and right away the office is polarized. Some hate it. Some love it. Some are ambivalent. Let me be upfront: I love the video. And no, I’m not a blind Miley-lover. I’m not the biggest fan. In fact I loathe her video for Who Owns My Heart (what the hell was that crap?). I thought that her VMA performance was quite ignorant. And I think we’ve hit the ceiling with all the twerking.
But here’s the thing: I feel like on some cosmic level I get what Miley is going through and where she is at this point in her life and career. And I also get the trappings of being in the spotlight and wanting to not give a crap about what anyone else says. I mean, she is just being Miley. So, let’s talk about what makes her latest video for Wrecking Ball a great video.
Wrecking Ball is a huge departure from We Can’t Stop. Gone are the over-sized teddy bears and the obnoxious sticking out of the tongue. Wrecking Ball calls for that emotional impact and Miley literally comes out swinging. I interpret the song as a heartbroken clarification between Miley and her man (I don’t know how close to home this hits for her as the song wasn’t written by her) and needed a video that is just as heavy. The video is able to support the song by its simplicity and its reverent imagery.
The video begins with a close up shot of Miley singing passionately into the camera. Miley’s clean and fresh face, free of trendy ideology really allows the viewer to focus on her lips, her eyes, the story she’s trying to tell. We pan out and of course Miley is nearly nude save fore her crop tank top, white undies, and Doc Martens but somehow it looks barren in the way that someone who has been hurt or stripped would be barren. This look really works for Miley and she can pull it off.
But of course if we’re going to talk about her clothes we may as well talk about her nudity in the video too. At first shocking, her nudity put me off a bit. I wondered if it was necessary for her to be nude, but then again, can I really be shocked that she’s nude? Why not! She’s baring her soul here people. So the nudity makes sense and supports the song. In fact, the way she is nude is for the most part strong and tasteful.
Fine. I’ll give all the haters acknowledgement regarding the hammer scene. Did she really have to lick it suggestively? It took me out of the video, for sure, and reminded me that I was watching a Miley video and not an Adele video. But that in itself is another pro to the video. It hurts to admit it but love it or hate it, licking a hammer is exactly what Miley would do, so why should I be shocked or surprised or disgusted that she did it? That’s who she is (yes, a person who makes out with hammers, even unnecessarily so) and it’s not so distracting that I wouldn’t watch the video again or that it ruins the song so I guess #YOLO.
All in all, the video for Wrecking Ball was beautiful. Simple. Just like the song. And if I can get an instance where Miley isn’t twerking, then I call this one a win for everyone.
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