Here is an astonishingly entertaining music video which, in my opinion, gets everything right.
This is a great, rocking song by Canadian powerpop band Sloan, full of hooks and power chords, and the video works primarily because of the filmmaker’s approach to the material. Rather than attempt to visually interpret the lyrics, or have the band “perform” the song in costume to the camera, the filmmaker uses simple colors and shapes to excite the brain and emphasize the power of the hooks. If the song is ear candy, then this video was surely meant to be eye candy.
The palette and design elements are inspired by mid-century minimalist design, Neoplasticism, and French New Wave cinema. The band is filmed in high contrast black and white, at times reducing them to duotone or sillhouette, always within a monochromatic palette of black, white, red and orange. This kind of filming does not emphasize individual celebrity, rather it presents the band and it’s members as pure form. Our eye is constantly offered repeating lines and shapes, and the camera is constantly in motion, hiding and revealing, introducing and subtracting. Consider this pull-back starting at 00:34 that gradually reveals the members of the band and their instruments, at the same time slowly covering them up with candylike, translucent red squares. This reveal-and-hide is a pleasurable cinematic experience.
This film is enjoyable to watch because the artistic elements enhance the experience of the music, rather than imposing on it or distracting from it. There’s no “story” to follow, no big twist ending to wait for. Each frame and sequence is a pleasure in and of itself.