We’re honoring one of my favorite authors, Philip K. Dick, this week at Screened, so I figured it’d be apropos to profile a video that reflected the theme. Problem is, none of the movies based on the man’s stories have theme songs- -at least one's memorable enough for me to recall. And that creates a predicament. Thus, I had to claw real into the scariest chambers of my teen years' misspent hours and pull up the music video for the Apex Theory’s “Apossibly.” It’s the theme song to the much-maligned video game, Minority Report: Everybody Runs, a sixth generation console game loosely based on the movie, Minority Report, which was loosely based on a P.K. Dick short story in turn... so it counts!
Problem with that, though, is that it’s a performance-driven rock video without the essential ingredient of a hot chick. And we just can’t abide with that. Thus, with Andrew’s handy suggestion, I’m also profiling the vid for the Broken Bells’ “The Ghost Inside” as it’s a sci-fi themed clip that’s all about a hot chick in a spaceship.
I honestly didn’t pay much attention to this when it debuted about a year ago, so maybe I'm a little late to the party. I’ve never heard of this band before and I’m not much of a Mad Men devotee. Still, it tells a clear story with clean effects and sets warn enough to look like they're out of Blade Runner, and the song's a tight track I could easily imagine hearing in some chill coffee shop. While it doesn't really capture the paranoia and existential identity confusion of Dick’s better known stories, the extended joke about gas prices being so absurd that they literally cost drivers an arm and a leg reminds me of the sardonic whimsy you’d find in short stories like "Paycheck" or "the Crawlers." Plus, Hendricks in a space suit makes me think of Firefly, and that's always good.
Bringing it back to “Apossibly,” this is indeed the theme song for the beat ‘em up that used its ragdoll physics engine for all it was worth in '02. The Apex Theory were something of a “two hit wonder” in the alt rock scene before their break-up a few years ago and this song's definitely the better of the two. The hypnotic, Mediterranean-style electric guitar riff really worms its way into your head and I think the video stands out as clever, expressionist approach to the “integrated lyrics” gimmick that started with that Bob Dylan "Subterranean Homesick Blues" video. In this case, the concept goes a step further as song’s lyrics swirl around the band, wall them in, crawl on them and even creep around their feet like a whole mess of maggots. Impressively, I don't think any angle or word-formation effect is used more than once.
I can’t really account for the bassist’s half-shaven beard or the swinger’s Alvin Seville-style sweater, but enjoy it nevertheless….
And here's the vid for Christina Hendricks by the pool... I mean, "The Ghost Inside."