Lana Del Rey’s “Born to Die:” A Review

post postmodernismI woke up with Lana Del Rey’s song “Born to Die” stuck in my head. I was surprised to see that the video, published just three days ago, already has almost a million and a half views. But it’s easy to see why.

Lana sits in a baroque church, with tigers on each side of her. I couldn’t help but laugh. I love tigers, religious art, and pretty girls. Her tattooed lover is attractive too; I wondered if all of his tats are real. I was a little embarrassed at some of Lana’s hackneyed gesticulations — slicing her throat when she says die, making the cuckoo sign on the side of her head when she sings insane — but there was nothing self-conscious about it at all, and in our post postmodern world, it all became okay. The shadowy neoclassical hallway with onyx columns at the video’s end, followed by that great shot of her and boo hugging in front of a waving American flag reminded me of a time when music videos were more esteemed, when TRL had clout in influencing a young artist’s career. I don’t know if it’s my own nostalgia or the fact that the video was simply well done, but the overall effect was pleasing.

I fell in love with Lana when “Video Games” came out, and even though I’m no longer waiting on pins and needles for her album to drop, there’s something charming about her; whether it’s her beautiful hair, (probably) cosmetic surgeried lips and nose, or her general appeal as a kind of indie Marilyn Monroe, which could be exactly what indie music needs in order to bridge the gap between itself and pop, I still like her sultry voice. I think the world is ready for her. Apparently I’m not the only one.

By Daniel Ryan Adler

Daniel Adler writes fiction and nonfiction and is finishing his MFA at University of South Carolina.

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