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New James Bond music video: Skin - Even accountants have imagination
many of them are lovely people
New James Bond music video: Skin

Title: Skin (download here)
Fandom: Casino Royale (2006 James Bond movie)
Music: Skin Is, My by Andrew Bird
Stats: DivX (55.4MB) and WMV (29.6MB), 3:40
Double-0 status confirmed; it's a pity MI6 doesn't supply the skin to go along with it.

It's Not Easy Bein' Green Bond. Additional notes under the cut, and if it's of interest to anyone, I've written up a separate commentary on how the spot color effect at the end of the vid was achieved in After Effects.

I didn't see Casino Royale until well after it was released. And it's interesting, because most of what I heard/read about this new Bond incarnation was how brutal and cold and ruthless he was. I actually think his defining characteristic (at least in this movie) is recklessness. He goes from a state of emotionally detached body-count-stacking-uppage to completely losing his heart and being willing to quit the whole spy gig to float around the world for the love of Vesper. If that's not utter recklessness, then I don't know what is.

That's really what appealed to me about Casino Royale. I've seen other Bond movies and sure, many have been fun, but none really made a lasting impression on me. Perhaps because Bond himself was too flippant, too suave, too polished, too far removed from anything ever impressing itself upon him. Hooray for origin stories and the opportunity to get a look at what shapes a character when they're still all fresh and malleable!

So, hmmm...I talked more about the movie than the vid, but it's all part of the same :) I guess the summary here is that there's a journey to becoming that "Bond, James Bond" of legend, and it's filled with pain -- physical and emotional. Armor is built and stripped and built again. It's a bloody process. And Bond + Vesper = dooooooomed true love that pushes all my buttons, goodnight.

my skin is
white as parchment
drier than a downtown office building
where the air is tight
there's time spent
resting on her bones
waiting for the telephone to ring
ba-ring ba-ring ba-ring
ba-ring ba-ring ba-ring...
bo-ring bo-ring bo-ring
bo-ring bo-ring bo-ring...

my skin is
cold as her toes on the bathroom floor
run back to bed and slam the door
oh what a lovely sound
oh how it shakes the ground
oh what a lovely sound
oh what a lovely sound
oh what a lovely

is my
it's the only thing
that doesn't really fly in my land
and love, oh love
is my love is
it's the only thing that
butterfly in Thailand

let it be printed on every t-shirt in this land
on the finest of cottons and the hippest of brands
in bolder letters than the capital I
that it's the only thing, it's the only thing
it's the only lonely

my skin is
white as parchment
drier than a downtown office building
where the air is tight
there's time spent
waiting for that
macrame bird of prey
to come down and sing
la-ling la-ling la-ling
la-ling la-ling la-ling...
la-ling la-ling la-ling
la-ling la-ling la-ling...
oh what a lovely sound
oh how it shakes the ground
oh what a lovely sound
oh how it shakes the ground
oh what a lovely sound

oh what a lovely sound
oh how it shakes the ground
(repeat to end)

Feedback, if you're so moved, is genuinely appreciated.

Tags: ,
Current Mood: satisfied satisfied

84 comments or speak!
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obsessive24 From: obsessive24 Date: November 2nd, 2008 07:57 am (UTC) (Link)
This. was. amazing.

I mean, obviously I didn't expect any less from you in terms of editing and musicality (I'll return to that in a bit), but the sheer skill that you display here is like a gigantic, scrumptious buffet of goodness that just keeps giving and giving and giving. The effects work, in particular, is fantastic. I can see how the work you spent in AE on Dance With Me has flowed through to your work here, though obviously you're not using exactly the same sparklies. The black and white flashes! The blurs! The split screens and wipes! The colour selection in the end! OMG! That red dress has never looked more iconic.

I haven't seen many Bond films, but of the ones I've seen Casino Royale definitely comes in very superior. Most of that is due to the emotional resonance, which I thought you captured extraordinarily well in under 4 minutes. The song is a fantastic choice, offsetting the grit with an ostensibly upbeat mood all through.

Back to cutting and musicality. I'm not sure if this is one thing or two things, but I've recently realised one of the main reasons why I'm so mesmerised by your work is because you know exactly when to cut spectacularly fast, and when to not cut to let the clip play out, whether due to content or source motion.
obsessive24 From: obsessive24 Date: November 2nd, 2008 07:59 am (UTC) (Link)
I pressed post before I'd finished. Don't really have anything else to add, but just wanted to round it all up and say that this is most likely my favourite vid from you to date. It is simply fabulous and I'll definitely be reccing it, though that might have to wait a bit as I'm just about to run off to pick M. up from the airport. But I digress. This = fantastic. You = rock. And Eva GRAIN is still the most beautiful woman on earth.
From: cibby Date: November 2nd, 2008 03:37 pm (UTC) (Link)
As per usual, kick ass. You always hit that. Kick ass that is.
chasarumba From: chasarumba Date: November 3rd, 2008 12:38 am (UTC) (Link)
Thank you! One of these days I'll come up with something that is just "ass," sans the "kick" ;)
ok2nv_theoracle From: ok2nv_theoracle Date: November 2nd, 2008 03:39 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yay! You got your juices flowing and finished! And that's just what this vid is: Juicy. \o/

Also, I don't know where my head was at when you posted "Eulogy", but I just watched that one, too, and now I'm full of the Dean woobies. ;Þ
chasarumba From: chasarumba Date: November 3rd, 2008 12:39 am (UTC) (Link)
Thank you on both counts! It's certainly no hardship, vidding these very attractive specimens!
bradcpu From: bradcpu Date: November 2nd, 2008 04:06 pm (UTC) (Link)

Aside from being some of the best editing I've ever seen, period, that is just an overwhelming experience as a viewer. What really strikes me about your vids is how you take a song/concept and mold the source to it in a way that looks so completely natural and honest. Like it was always there and we just didn't see it. Which, I guess is the real nature of vidding.

In this case, I think you've tapped into the pulse source in virtually every way possible. The combination of the song, your editing style/musicality, and the concept... watching it feels so dangerously *immediate* and delicate, even though it's such a sure-footed construction. I think your use of b/w stills goes a long way toward achieving that.

All of the layers of musicality here and the way you addressed them. Wow. Is that just instinctual? It's so complex and perfect, but it doesn't look like you're *trying*, you know? It like it just *is* the way it's supposed to be.

A few favorite moments:

:15 - When the second layer of guitars kicks in here and the pace suddenly unfolds to the bullets and message at :19... right away, I'm just breathless.

:36 - Beautiful transition there

:48 - Love the ext. motion on the electric guitar here.

1:30 - Adore the pace of this whole segment and the little speed bump on the drums at 1:35

1:45-1:46 - That transition is the first time a bit of editing has made me *curse out loud* it was so good.

1:55 - Jump cuts of awesomeness

2:41 - Again with the amazing transition. How do you do that?? It's something about the motion... *picks it apart*

2:57 - Raindrops. This is one of many examples (a particularly brilliant one) of how the internal motion reflects the music *in addition* to your cutting, so it becomes layers of musicality.

The final segment is just magical, of course. Love the use of the crumbling building for a metaphor(!!!!) and the coloring through this. Also, the way the building's collapse reflects the drums here (see above, re: Raindrops).

chasarumba From: chasarumba Date: November 3rd, 2008 05:47 am (UTC) (Link)
Holy cow, I read your "raindrops" comment and had to check to make sure you weren't inside my brain o_0 I'm still not entirely sure...*has another look* That's one of those instances where I didn't expect my thought process to translate to anyone at all; it was just there because it made me happy to have the plucking motif in the music paired with rain (and it worked in terms of the progression of the narrative). That you noticed it? Whoa, too cool.

Re musicality, I think I'm sometimes very simplistic (or at least straightforward) in my approach...what instrument has prominence at a particular moment in the song (whether it's the vocal line, or percussion and so on...I don't hesitate to switch around as the song changes), what does it sound like and how can I translate that visually in a way that doesn't forget about the narrative? Lots of trial and error (with emphasis on "error") along the way :)

Your comments are a feast -- thank you for every word!! You're awesome!
destro From: destro Date: November 2nd, 2008 07:00 pm (UTC) (Link)

Man. Man. I didn't know I needed something like this until, you know, I saw it. I love, love, love how you contrast the stylish cool of Bond's job, with the crunchy, bone-breaking, bloody cost. And the little bit of meta-editing at the end, with the buildings shaking to ground, as "oh what a lovely sound" fades out on repeat: brilliant.

Love. LOVE.
chasarumba From: chasarumba Date: November 3rd, 2008 05:57 am (UTC) (Link)
I love, love, love how you contrast the stylish cool of Bond's job, with the crunchy, bone-breaking, bloody cost.

Ahhhh, THANK you for watching and for the kind comments! I love an origin story, love that we see a Bond in Casino Royale who only *thinks* he understands what it means to be a double-0.

And as I mentioned in a comment recently, a big thanks to you for music pimping, as that's part of the reason I stumbled across Andrew Bird! Who would have thought this was a Bond song? It definitely doesn't sound that way initially, but the theme that kicks in around at about 0:53 in the vid? I sat up really straight when I heard that!
arefadedaway From: arefadedaway Date: November 3rd, 2008 09:15 pm (UTC) (Link)
This is some of the best damn editing I've ever seen, period. The sheer level of skill you display here is insane. The vid feels simultaneously delicate and lethal, almost breathless, and it's sublimely constructed and gripping; you capture the emotional nuance of the film in four minutes but don't oversell, not an easy task. And the "lovely sound" juxtaposed with the raindrops and collapsing building - that and the red dress color work were so impressive I nearly cursed out loud. Fantastic.

Edited at 2008-11-03 09:15 pm (UTC)
chasarumba From: chasarumba Date: November 4th, 2008 12:14 am (UTC) (Link)
I am totally blown away by your praise! Gosh, thank you so much!

And the "lovely sound" juxtaposed with the raindrops and collapsing building - that and the red dress color work were so impressive I nearly cursed out loud.

I really struggled with that ending, with the plot elements that had to be left out in order to concentrate on what was important (I have an annoying compulsion with movie vids to tend towards plot regurgitation, which can be so restricting) -- Vesper's betrayal and death, how they shape Bond. I'm really glad to know that you responded well to it!
lysimache From: lysimache Date: November 3rd, 2008 10:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
Wow! Amazing editing, really beautiful. You've done an amazing job (and Daniel Craig and Eva Green definitely bring the pretty) -- I loved it!
chasarumba From: chasarumba Date: November 4th, 2008 12:18 am (UTC) (Link)
Thanks so much for the kind comment -- knowing that you loved is very happy-making!
bionic From: bionic Date: November 3rd, 2008 11:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
wow! That was completely gorgeous. Your editing is so amazing and perfect with the music, and soooo pretty!
chasarumba From: chasarumba Date: November 4th, 2008 01:10 am (UTC) (Link)
I really appreciate your comments and am *so* pleased that you enjoyed the vid!!
sekkie From: sekkie Date: November 4th, 2008 12:09 am (UTC) (Link)
Holy crap--the cuts with the tempo, the fast-slow, the use of color. Holy crap. I have vids of yours that are favorites for subject matter or choice of song, but this is a freaking masterpiece.
chasarumba From: chasarumba Date: November 4th, 2008 03:54 am (UTC) (Link)
Wow, thank you! I think there was a risk of it going into crazy quilt territory with all of the rhythmic cutting, so I'm quite relieved that you thought it worked!
talitha78 From: talitha78 Date: November 4th, 2008 02:33 am (UTC) (Link)
Wow. That was freakin' unreal. I have no words. Like others have said above, this is an editing masterpiece. Full stop.
chasarumba From: chasarumba Date: November 4th, 2008 05:45 am (UTC) (Link)
Bless you! Full stop :) Seriously, thank you for watching and commenting and I'm so glad that you enjoyed it!
ricestorm From: ricestorm Date: November 4th, 2008 05:24 am (UTC) (Link)
My God. I had no idea how you were going to make the song and the movie work, but I'm seriously bedazzled. Sorry for the lack of useful feedback but the video speaks for itself!
chasarumba From: chasarumba Date: November 4th, 2008 06:20 am (UTC) (Link)
Hey, as far as I'm concerned, all feedback is made of awesomeness! And bedazzlement, yay! Thank you so much :) It makes me very excited to hear that the vid *did* eventually sell you on the song/topic match...it wasn't an obvious choice, but was one of those where I felt in my gut that it would work if I could edit it properly.
counteragent From: counteragent Date: November 4th, 2008 04:35 pm (UTC) (Link)
holy COW chasa!

I LOVE THIS! the editing is phenomenal, the song choice is unusual but works extremely well, and this vid really transcends my frequent "that was great but so what?" response to movie vids by highlighting what the movie did well and improving what the movie toyed with but ultimately failed to fully deliver on, namely the emotional cxn between bond and vesper.

loved the fuzzing out to black when she kisses him--like his world has stopped like his heart skips a beat.

love love love the cutting of the house crumbling with his realization that his concept of vesper is crmbling. takes the visual imagery present in the movie from a "cmon, seriously? the whole building falls? hee" to an OMG the PAIN level for me.

You took a good movie and tightened it into a FABULOUS vid.
chasarumba From: chasarumba Date: November 5th, 2008 12:36 am (UTC) (Link)
and this vid really transcends my frequent "that was great but so what?" response to movie vids

Oh, I am so glad to hear that! Hooray! I was saying in another comment that I have to fight the compulsion to do loads of plot regurgitation with movie vids...not that there's anything wrong with a certain amount of it, but it can become *so* restrictive. And boring. I don't have the gene for meta vids (thankfully, I can enjoy YOUR genius efforts in that category :D) or AU, so I'd damn well better try to find an interesting perspective to explore in the source...or it's time to pack up my toys and go home, heh.

Thanks loads for your lovely comments!
mresundance From: mresundance Date: November 4th, 2008 04:38 pm (UTC) (Link)
I have a real lack of ability to communicate just how spectacular the editing in this is. Others have left you detailed notes and feedback, but I simply can't wrap my brain around it all yet to give you anything more than GUH.
chasarumba From: chasarumba Date: November 5th, 2008 12:40 am (UTC) (Link)
I am savoring your "GUH" :) Seriously, thanks so much for watching and taking the time to tell me that you enjoyed it -- it's truly appreciated no matter how many words you used!
enderwiggin24 From: enderwiggin24 Date: November 5th, 2008 09:19 pm (UTC) (Link)
I am not a vidder myself, so no way I have all the vocab or even the extend of knowledge to express how much work this must be!
even with my totally untrained eye, the cutting and clipping and the flow of the song...........I am sitting here right in front of my comp, and feel like being hypnotized!
glued to the screen!

its just seems to such a calm song (great song btw I did not know it before, but I like it!) and somehow you made it fit to all the sharp, sometimes brutal bond scenes!

simply magnificent!

I am pretty sure, I will have to rewatch this more often!

(and I totally hope, next year to see another bond vid from the new bond from you :D)
chasarumba From: chasarumba Date: November 6th, 2008 12:21 am (UTC) (Link)
Many thanks for your kind words about the vid -- I'm truly honored to know that you found it so engrossing and worthy of rewatching!

(and I totally hope, next year to see another bond vid from the new bond from you :D)

I am *totally* looking forward to Quantum of Solace! Let's hope it inspires another vid!
mranderson71 From: mranderson71 Date: November 8th, 2008 09:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
"Great. Fucking Great."

Just like Bond, this vid kicks inordinate amounts of ass, while looking incredibly slick.

First let me start by saying that I love how you've chosen to take a mostly linear path & re-tell the story in sequence. Its like a mini-movie with a character focus. Fabulous musicality & editing throughout, I did enjoy that you managed to pull off some quick cuts like the 007 bullet holes in the card on the beat, then employ the longer shot of when the dark haired woman answers the phone.

The effects shots were a really nice touch too. The "Schindlers List" B&W/red mask was just perfect in that sequence towards the end.

Thats a keeper for sure!
chasarumba From: chasarumba Date: November 9th, 2008 12:27 am (UTC) (Link)
"Great. Fucking Great."

OIC what you did thar!

Thanks so much for the awesome comments -- I appreciate every word and am so happy that you enjoyed the vid! I'm relieved that you responded positively to the editing/musicality...it's sort of a delicate balance, isn't it? If you let the song rule everything, then the narrative probably won't be well-served, so I tried to keep both in mind.
84 comments or speak!
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