Take Me To Church

There are two videos for “Take me to Church” by Hozier that I want to feature today.

Both have been on my radar for a while, and I thought I’d featured one on this site a while ago. Apparently not, though – so you get a double post to make up for it.

Directed by Brendan Canty and Conal Thomson
Cast: Emmet O’Riabhaigh, Daniel Coughlan, Patrick Sheahan

The first is the ‘official’ video, above, which helped propel the song and artist into the charts. It was shot in Cork by the emerging production company, Feel Good Lost, for just €1,500. When the video was posted to YouTube in late September 2013, it went viral quickly and received over 230,000 views in two weeks.

It’s a beautifully done, affecting video, telling the story of two men in love, and the brutal backlash they face when homophobic members of their community learn about their relationship. The use of grayscale and light help give it more power while keeping things simple, and letting the song and story stand out.

Starring: Sergei Polunin
Directed by David LaChapelle
Choreography by Jade Hale-Christofi
Music by Hozier

Then there’s this beauty from David LaChapelle. Nothing but the song, a bright and airy barn, and the extraordinary Sergei Polunin.

Polunin is a Ukrainian dancer known for his conflicted relationship with dancing – he is the ‘bad boy’ of ballet – and the video tries to highlight this clash and search for his own identity. There are a few moments in the choreography which are better suited to stage than film (such as the ’emotional’ acting moves) but otherwise it’s stunning. I could watch it all day.

Read a recent interview from Hozier with the Guardian about Take Me To Church.

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