music video for Re:tract
Director: Lucy Chappell
E. Producer / DOP: Laura Dinnett
Producers: Natasha Gravia Lund, Jasmine De Silva
First AD: Pip Feldberg Collins
Focus puller: Ben Oliver
Steadicam: Hannah Jel
Camera Trainee: Samara Addai
Armourer: Marshall Baron
Costume Designer: Ilaria Mosca
Costume Assistant: Margarida Miranda
HMU & Prosthetics: Charlotte Aldane
Props: Kate Parnell
This music video was a truly collaborative experience by each department. As the director Lucy Chappel stated in the treatment for the project, this song by the band Re:tract is a visceral experience – it’s haunting and atmospheric, with an ethereal female vocal and pulse-like beat, married with lyrics dictating some kind of longing and wanting – a hunger, desire, something carnal, animalistic. Therefore the director imagined this music video as a running, chasing, a pursuit. A game. Of love? Or life?
We wanted to explore lust and seduction and the dangers of both. To intertwine the idea of the cat-and-mouse chase of love within a thrilling, fantasy setting, animalistic with exciting visuals, drawing on concepts and imagery from British folklore, creature horror and feminist, magical realism.
We followed exclusively two female characters in their pursuit of each other: an huntress and a creature.
The Huntress is utilitarian, a soldier in many ways, doing a job – to hunt and destroy the creature. In our fantastical world, she is essentially opposite to the creature. She has the mentality of a soldier/officer, fearless – and the costume reflect this, with a structured look, dark colours – grey, black, green – that also help her hide in the forest, maybe with a dystopian edge. Inspirations for this came from Hunger Games, Hanna, The Lobster, The Girl With The dragon Tattoo.
The Huntress has an edgy look – dreadlocks, dyed hair, piercing on the face; she wears protective equipment and carries a compound bow and an holster with arrows. All has been accurately broken down.
Regarding the Creature, she is a semi-human magical being, looking frightening, but with beauty in and the intricacy, otherwordliness. Thanks also to the collaboration with the prosthetic artist, she has small but distinctive features that intrigue us and make us question what the Creature is.
She is almost like a part of the forest, without obvious ‘clothing’, but she had to be covered in something that also gives a hint that she might have been human once. Therefore the costume is made of different nets (from previous hunters who tried to capture the Creature), that started to became part of her body and skin. To the point that in some spots we can’t see if it’s net or her scaled skin. There’s moss growing up on her skin too, some feathers (from her preys) trapped between the nets, and of course mud (using body painting), since she’s been crawling in her nest. She’s an in-between, one of a kind
creature. That we find scary and mesmerizing,
It was crucial, for the construction of the costume, the balance between the ethereal/ barely-there clothing and the functionality of keeping the actress covered and as warm as possible, as well allowing all the movements of the chase in the story.