A decade of Lana Del Rey music videos has proved that the slippery star loves three things: grainy Super 8 footage, all things Californian and Hollywood, and distinctly American mythology — like '70s cults and JFK's assassination. After the jump, we dissect the evolution of her video discography, from "Video Games" to "Chemtrails Over the Country Club."
The one that started it all, “Video Games” introduced what would become LDR’s most-loved music video motifs: grainy Super 8 footage, American iconography, and women riding on vehicles.
Many missed Del Rey’s ambitious Tropico short film, which featured a pop culture-fied Adam & Eve scene, LDR as a stripper, and more shots of her whizzing through the hills of California in a cool retro car.
In this film noir-esque visual from her Ultraviolence era, Lana Del Rey is a ghost haunting an old man who, in hindsight, kind of looks like Joe Biden? Read into that what you will.
What appears to be another “delicate Hollywood woman wondering aimlessly around her airy California home” video quickly devolves into LDR shooting down a paparazzi helicopter with a machine gun. Iconic.
Del Rey’s pop culture obsession strays into cult territory as she recruits Father John Misty to play her bearded leader while she sips Kool-Aid. The gorgeous 10-minute visual ends on a long underwater sequence soundtracked to Debussy’s “Clair De Lune.”
The Hollywood sign has always been a symbol of yearning and romance, and Del Rey amps that up here as she and The Weeknd have a precarious and dreamlike rendezvous on top of the massive structure.
Del Rey’s videos have always leaned West Coast, but her Norman F*cking Rockwell! visuals feel distinctly Californian with shots of her surfing and performing in a beachy dive bar.
In “Doin’ Time,” a gigantic Lana Del Rey wreaks havoc in Venice Beach and later, in “real life” as she steps through the movie screen at a drive-in theater. A commentary on fame, perhaps?
The star’s most recent visual takes aesthetic cues from the glamour old Hollywood. But then add in a freak Oz-like tornado and a demonic ritual at the end, and you get LDR’s twist on “We are the granddaughters of witches you couldn’t burn.”