Friday, September 11, 2009

Friday Night Video

Anyone suffering from Rick Springfield fatigue yet? Yeah, me neither. We're now just two weeks away from the concert in Atlantic City, and that means just three more videos in this ten-week countdown. You will learn to appreciate him, god damnit, or I will fucking die trying!

This week I've chosen a video which is historically significant in terms of its director. Depending on what source you look at, the 1984 video for Bop 'Til You Drop, a song from Rick's movie Hard to Hold, is the first professional "thing" directed by the great David Fincher (Fight Club, Seven, Zodiac). He was barely 22-years-old at the time, but Fincher's visual style was already well-formed and on full display here. While the following video is laughably silly most of the time (Rick saves the enslaved human race from their alien overlords in a dystopian future???), this is unmistakably Fincher. Fincher's film debut would come eight years later with the criminally underrated Alien 3 sequel, but if you view that movie and this video side by side, the similarities are striking. It's way dated, of course, but if you want to see the creative birth of a great filmmaker, one complete with wretched excess and animatronic aliens, this is the video to see. The song...meh. Not one of my favorites, but hey, they can't all be winners.

Interestingly, Fincher collaborated with Springfield on two other videos as well as a feature-length concert video called The Beat of the Live Drum. And yes, I did special order that VHS gem back when I worked at Blockbuster Video. I don't think people would ever associate Rick Springfield with David Fincher, but there you have it. A symbiotic relationship that advanced one career and launched another. Go figure.


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