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Film Analysis

In an eight-minute music video, the artists in USA for Africa come together as a group to sing in support of the humanitarian efforts continuing in Africa. The music video itself lies mainly in the performance category, the viewer just seeing all the artists singing. The camera moves along with the people that are at the center of the video, from one duet to another, from a solo to the entire group singing the chorus together. There is no heavy production going on, it is a simple video highlighting each artist that is contributing to the song. If there were to be anything added, it would take away from the meaning of the song.

(Music video for ‘We Are the World,’ YouTube.)

On the other hand, in order for Maroon 5 to get their message of empowering women and supporting feminism across, the music video was the most important part of expressing that message. The music video shows interchanging shots of 27 different powerful women that were asked to be a part of the music video. Each woman was chosen because of the impact that she has had on the world and supporting feminism worldwide. This emphasizes the meaning of the empowerment of women all over the world because a little girl could be watching the video and would be able to see someone on the screen that looks like her.

The music video itself is non-stop movement, a circular motion-control shot that pans continuously in order to capture all the women that make an appearanceĀ in the vide0. The focus of the video is very shallow, only concentrating on Levine and the women in the center. Even then, the focus gets even shallower, with Levine only being in parts of the video while multiple impactful women take up the entire frame of the shot, meaning that the complete attention of the viewer was placed on whichever women were in the video at the time.

Another cinematographic element is that the movement of the video is constant- the flow of the song never ends. The single shot of the entire band of Maroon 5 is one take with Levine in the center and the rest of the band situated around him. The women that come in and out of the center of focus do so through a series of dissolve cuts, one woman becoming the other, showing what each individually stands for (Yale Film analysis).

(Music Video for ‘Girls Like You,’ YouTube.)

Both music videos are diegetic, the song is heard by all those taking part in the video itself. In ‘We Are the World,’ every artist that appears on the screen is singing and can be heard by the artists that are around them (i.e. when Tina Turner was singing, she could be heard by Cyndi Lauper). In ‘Girls Like You’ everything musical about the song is seen, the camera moves to show the guitar, the drums (snare, bass, cymbal), the synthesizer, and the piano. Everyone who appears as the focus of the video is singing along to the song, showing how the inclusion of the instruments in the video displays how all people in the video are able to hear the music and sing along.

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