Wednesday, October 22, 2008
All is Full of Love
Directed by Chris Cunningham, USA, 1999, 4 minutes
To be honest, I am not that familiar with experimental films, so I went through really a hard time deciding what films to write about. At first, I was thinking about writing my entry on Mongoloid by Bruce Conner, but it was really complicated, and had trouble understanding the film. I looked up some of Björk’s music videos, and chose the one that I like the most. That is All is Full of Love. Two robots are shown in the film, and the music video reminded me of a movie, I, Robot, which I enjoyed very much. The color of the film also attracted me. The contrast of the robot’s white color and the background’s black color appears beautifully in the music video.
Björk’s music videos are famous for being both experimental and surreal. Not one of her music videos is “normal” at all. I do not really understand what relationship her music videos have with her song lyrics. In this music video, All is Full of Love, Björk’s voice is mystic and dreamy, but it sometimes gives me creepy feeling when I listen to the music at night alone. The lyrics express that everything is full of love, and the two robots in the music video are matched well. The robots take place of Björk and sing as she sings, and their love reaches climax as the song reaches its climax.
One day Björk woke up in the morning and made the song all of a sudden as if she was possessed by something. Although it is made in such a short time, it certainly is a great song. The lyrics are really heart-warming, and the music video of the song is even more charming than the song itself. I like the delicacy of the robots that are used in the music video. They are really similar to humans. In fact, the robots in the film are hand-made out of clay. To show Björk’s figure better, Björk actually posed for the robot, and technicians added computer graphics on Björk’s body. The movement of the robots is not only computer-generated, but also the hand work of the staffs. The staffs had to move every single part of the robot in order to make the movement look real, just like the process to make a stop motion animation. In the end, I had trouble distinguishing what is computer graphic and what is the hand work. Thanks to the effort of the staffs, the music video won MTV 2000 Breakthrough Video and Best Special Effects. In addition, it won the best music video in 42nd Grammy in 2000 and many other awards.
When the director Chris Cunningham was offered to make the music video, the only thing Björk wanted to show in the film was the feeling of ‘the most pure whiteness.’ It is amazing that Cunningham came up with the idea of robots that look and act like humans. Their eyes add the liveliness of human in the cold body of a robot. Just like the lyrics of the music, the music video is symbolic, too. I believe the robot, which appears in the first place, is born at the beginning of the film, since it poses like an unborn child on the conveyor belt. Throughout the film, the robot goes through various processes and at the end the robot is completed. By showing the procedure of a new robot being born and making love, the music video gives a hint that there will be another new life born.