The Arcade Fire have released a new music video for “The Suburbs,” directed by Spike Jonze (Where the Wild Things Are). Those familiar with the Jonze lore know he made his name as a music video director, crafting for the likes of Weezer, Björk, Fatboy Slim, Kanye West, and LCD Soundsystem over the last two decades.
It was announced earlier this year that Jonze was working with a short film about “friends growing apart” with the Arcade Fire. “The Suburbs” isn’t that (probably), but it doesn’t take too much imagination to see the connection. Check out the video, plus a look at how it may relate to the Jonze/Fire short film, after the jump.
Here’s what Arcade Fire frontman Win Butler told Pitchfork about the band’s collaboration with Jonze:
It’s not a video. It’s a short film; we’re still working on it. It’s like a science-fiction B-movie companion piece for the record. Basically, we played Spike some music from the album and the first images that came to his mind had the same feeling as this idea for a science fiction film I had when I was younger. My brother and I and Spike wrote it together, which was really fun– it was like total amateur hour.
We shot it in Austin and a lot of kids are in the film, and it was great just hanging out with these 15-year-olds for a week and writing down all the funny things they said. It was cool to revert to being a 15-year-old for a little while.
The kids in the video seem fifteen to me. Martial law is a classic sci-fi/B-movie trope. And I’ve never been to Austin, but that’s about how it looked in Slackers.
So perhaps this an excerpt — a trailer of sorts. Or maybe it’s the end result, if they didn’t have enough for the planned short film. “The Suburbs” works as a standalone for me. Kinda reminds me of Never Let Me Go in the way it unfolds, if not where it ends.
Still, I’d love to see the promised expansion. Something to tide us over till Jonze’s next feature.