Video Review: James Arthur "Say You Won’t Let Go"

In black-and-white, James Arthur sits on the couch, playing his guitar.

A couple kayaks on the lake as rain drizzles into the lake. They walk hand-in-hand in the forest. The young man kisses his girlfriend on top of her forehead.

At his keyboard, a young man hooks it up. A young woman walks into family room and asks if she can help. They fiddle with the controls. They nod their heads to the beat they created. The young woman admires him as he figures out what note would work best.

Arthur looks out the screen door.

A mother holds her baby in her arms and sings to it.  The baby yawns and clutches its mother’s finger.

As the couple continue to walk in the forest, they stop and she touches his chest.

Meanwhile, at the lake, a six-year-old plays with rocks and four-year-old boy splashes the water. At home, they play in a fort together. She points to the ceiling and he turns to give her a hug from the side. Then, their mother reads them a story at bedtime while they both cuddle up on each side of her.

A fiftysomething man gives his dog a ball and frowns as he remains seated on the family room floor.

At a hospital, a woman holds her dying mother’s hand while her son and his wife look on. Her father tries to hold back tears and then finally sobs. He sits at a chair, overlooking the patio, folding and unfolding his hands.

Arthur continues to play guitar on the couch.

Rating: 1/5

The black-and-white blankets otherwise affectionate images in cynicism and anguish. The young woman, walking in the forest with her boyfriend, believes it may be the final good memory they have before everything falls apart. The young woman won’t have her feelings reciprocated from her aspiring musician crush.  Adulthood will separate the siblings. The fiftysomething man wonders why his life didn’t end up liked he thought.

Nonetheless, the family at the dying woman’s bedside is harrowing. The man has no idea how to be alone. She was his life and now she will be gone. It is then that the black-and-white becomes effective, punching the audience in the gut, causing them to keel over in pain. Unfortunately, it’s at the expense of the other previous relationships, poisoning them with grief.

Director: Felix Urbauer  Year: 2016

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Pam Avoledo Administrator
Pam Avoledo spends her time binge-watching classic teen dramas and stands firm in her pro-Leyton stance. She also received her journalism degree in 2006 from Oakland University. Her work has been published in the White Wall Review, Sledgehammer Lit ,Greatest City Collective & 45 Magazine . Fevers of the Mind, and forthcoming in Daily Drunk Mag\'s Kirstofia anthology.

2 thoughts on “Video Review: James Arthur "Say You Won’t Let Go"

  1. I kind of viewed as seperate stories myIself. However, I do like your theory linking them. The video shows people at different stagess of their lives and I do think it’s entirely possible. Great theory! 🙂

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