The midnight waters rock back and forth, cradling the sea. From the yacht, a man looks out by the bridge. In the fuchsia light, a stripper (Bella Hadid) tilts her head. Another man lights up a cigarette. The stripper fires a shot, the bullet piercing the glass.
After the brief introduction, The Weeknd walks in blood red light and billowing smoke on the way to the strip club he frequents. A shot rings out. However, it turns out to be lightning and he gets caught in the pouring rain.
There, the strippers go through their performances, hoping the gangsters throw them enough money to pay the rent.The Weeknd steps inside. He notices a guy with a reptile, leering at him while another couple of men play poker. He watches Hadid, aware that any life inside her has gone and is concerned for her. He had seen her in the phone booth, making a call. But she hung up after thinking someone was watching her.
In the fuchsia light, a gangster waits for her, smoking a cigarette. A bloodied man clutches the chain link fence, screaming. Before that, he put a gun to Hadid and covered her mouth.
When he visited the club months later, she took a knife to his throat once he appeared between her legs. The other strippers help cover him in plastic and dump his body.
One of the gangsters, believing that the Weeknd helped the girls, puts a gun to his neck. He breathes and looks to his side. From the apartment building, Hadid kills him, shooting him in the neck. Another stripper breaks a bottle over another gangster’s head while another throws a knife.
After the murders, Hadid jumps on The Weeknd’s motorcycle as they speed through a tunnel and get out of town.
Check and mate, Bruno Mars. The Weeknd takes Mars’ usual darkness and plunges it even further into depths that would make Harmony Korine squeal with delight. Nonetheless, he has a desire to protect Hadid. He wants to save her and there is something about that her that tells him she deserves better than being someone’s plaything. There is still a chance for Hadid – she became a cold-blooded murderer but she had to do what was needed. Even with the knowledge that the Weeknd is a rescuer at heart and Hadid can be saved, the overwhelming bleakness still lingers afterwards.
Director: BRTHR Year: 2015
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