- Member: Lostboy
- Title: Video Girl Ai: The Fall
- Premiered: 2001-09-21
- Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) The Fall
SPOLIER ALERT: Do not watch this video if you don't want to see the ending scene of Video Girl Ai!
*** NOTE ***
Please take a moment to give your opinion on this video. I value the input of others. It helps maintain my sense of what fans enjoy. Thanks for viewing my work!
. Anime Weekend Atlanta 7, 2001
. Professional Awards: Best Video
. Professional Awards: Best Romance
. Middle Tennessee Anime Convention, November 2001
. Judge's Award: Tiffany Grant's Favorite
. AnimeMusicVideos.Org Viewers' Choice Awards 2002
. Best Romance
- Mac G4
- Sony Media Converter
- JVC SVHS VCR Model HR-S3600U
- Final Cut Pro 1.2
- Adobe Photoshop 4.0
- Tsunami MPEG Encoder
This video idea came to me one night in the shower. All my best ideas come to me either when driving or showering. Don't ask me why. I don't know. I always know which ideas are truly my best ones, though, because my eyes well up with tears (even if it's a comedy) and I start giggling like a lunatic in a rubber room. Uncontrollable emotional gibbering for a few seconds. That's the sign of an idea of mad genius. Or at least madness of SOME kind. And that's just what I did when this one came to me.
The concept is pretty clear, portraying the pensiveness of a love which can only last until the magic of Ai's video tape runs out. I used the heartbeat-like sound at the beginning of the song to show the VCR counting down, setting the tone for the video right at the outset.
From there, I took it straight into the developing--yet despairing and melancholy--romance between Youta and Ai. Then I started using flashforwards and flashbacks. I had two reasons for moving forward and backward in time:
1. First, the lyrics move in the same fashion, saying things like 'now that you're gone' then moving into another verse where they say 'I see you drift away.' The story in the lyrics floats around through thoughts, dreams, and memories. It's told through the turbulent emotions of the man who has lost, or is losing, the woman he loves; which leads me to the next reason...
2. This music video isn't JUST a narrative story of what happens to the characters. It's also an expressionistic work, showing the world as perceived through Youta's unconscious. In a sense, this is what Video Girl Ai is all about. It's filled with expressionism, surreality, and metaphor. Youta fights to reclaim Ai on a battlefield of Himself; facing his own uncertainties materialized as doppelgangers of his friend Takashi and his former crush Moemi, ravines of doubt and remorse, and a fragile, cruel, shattering staircase of unrequited love. I tried to use those elements of surreality and expressionism, and push them further, to make the entire video like a dream filled with Youta's aching need, wrenching loss, and finally resolute determination to rescue the woman he's grown to love more than his own life.
I did several subtle digital effects, for instance the peeling away of layers when the VCR is in the foreground and Ai and Youta are in the background (first the background is replaced by the panning-down shot of the school building, then the VCR vanishes, and finally the VCR's digital counter vanishes, each in turn). I added some softened edges for the flashbacks, popped in a few white flashes where I needed them, and used many soft, slow cross dissolves. I felt cross dissolves were largely appropriate in this video, in many cases, but there were also places where the percussion pops, and I used straight cuts, or cuts with white flashes.
I feel the most powerful moments in the video are the section where Ai is floating in the bedroom then ensnared by the videotape, and the entire ending, from the moment Youta falls to the ground and finds Ai on the crucifix. I tried to make those moments particularly strong, since they're also the most climactic moments in the song. I feel like I did that pretty well. Many of the quieter, more pensive moments early in the video are nice too. I don't think there are any weak spots. I managed to root those all out before this video saw the light of day.
So now it's your turn to tell me what you think of it. ^_^ I hope you enjoy it. I think it's my best dramatic piece. I hope you'll agree.