The music video for Robert Pattinson’s latest single, “I Can’t Let You Go”, was just released and is already causing a stir. The actor/musician uploaded the clip to his Instagram account and it has amassed more than 2.8 million views as of this writing (July 24, 2018). The video is a sassy takeoff on the typical romance movie, featuring some of the biggest names in Hollywood. It also serves as a commentary on society’s obsession with appearance and shallow culture.
Here’s the official synopsis for the video, penned by Pattinson himself:
“I Can’t Let You Go” starts with two strangers (played by Pattinson and actress Mia Wasikowska) meeting on a bus. They start talking and the camera focuses on their intense connection. Cut to: a glamorous party where people are celebrating in the buff. The camera pans among the revelers as they show off their best poses for the camera. Cut to: an office party where everyone is rocking pants and the boss has a problem with sexual harassment. Cut to: a luxury car driven by a woman (Pattinson’s longtime girlfriend, Emily Browning) as she picks up her children from school. Back to: the party scene and the woman is being verbally abused by a man (Pattinson). She drives off and the camera pans to show everyone celebrating their freedom and individuality. Cut to: a concert where the musician is accompanied by an orchestra as he performs. Cut to: a bar where a man (Pattinson) is drinking with his friends and discussing how much fun they are having. Cut to: a dinner party where everyone is wearing elegant gowns and dancing as the camera pans around the room. Cut to: a fancy restaurant and the staff are wearing elegant attire as they serve dinner. Two men (Pattinson and his father, Tony) argue about the man’s new girlfriend. The man storms out and the two fathers embrace. Cut to: a club where women are dressed in revealing clothes as they dance; the police have arrived and are telling people it’s time to go home.
The video is loosely based on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s 1920 novel, “The Great Gatsby”. The book examines the “terrible beauty” of American culture and the pursuit of wealth and power that accompanies it. What makes this video interesting is the way in which it questions that culture and exposes its hypocrisies.
The Great Gatsby is one of the most famous and beloved novels of all time and has been made into a movie a few times. It also inspired the television series, “Greed” which premiered in January 2018. Set in the Roaring Twenties, “Greed” examines the economic devastation caused by the Great Depression and how the wealthy kept their power by any means necessary. The series is loosely based on Jay Gatsby, a charismatic young man who believes he can buy his way to social prominence and love. Gatsby is played by actor and musician, Donald Glover in the series. Glover’s musical performance as Gatsby is superb; it’s one of the main reasons why the show was picked up for a second season.
So, while “I Can’t Let You Go” is a rousing tune about overcoming a bad break up, the video raises questions about the nature of that connection and the role that music and dating play in our culture. What do you think it’s about? Let us know in the comments below.