Rolling Stone: “Lana Del Rey has released a melancholy new video for “West Coast,” evoking the style of old Hollywood film noir.”
Just because it was finished in black and white does not make it anything like an old Hollywood film noir. It very clearly was not shot on film or in black and white. But good noir doesn’t have to be shot in black and white. Chinatown (one of my favorite movies of all time) is probably the best example of a noir that was shot in color and takes place mostly during the day. It’s the story that denotes a film as a noir. And this music video, as so many music videos that have come out in the past, let’s just call it, 10 years has no story.
It’s actually a bummer. Because I read that line from Rolling Stone and was genuinely intrigued. I’ve had an obsession with Lana Del Rey (or more accurately, reviews of her work) since she appeared on the scene in 2012 year. While I don’t totally agree with The Telegraph that her songs are like “some great lost soundtrack to LA Confidential” it’s certainly evocative of that era.
It’s actually disappointing that this video isn’t a melancholy film noir. Lana Del Rey has should be making short films to accompany her music to complete her look and her sound. One nice 40’s noir package. Until that happens. We have this. A two-location, shot in color and transferred to black and white music video without any story to speak of. Though maybe it is appropriate since The AV Club said in their review of her debut album, it’s “shallow.”