Video Review: Lady Gaga "John Wayne"

Sitting behind a white background, Lady Gaga plays her guitar in her soft pink hat and matching pantsuit.

From the street, she watches a man in an aqua cowboy outfit gallop away on his horse. Next, she hangs from the back of the horse, her legs spread as the word “Faster” appears on screen, multi-colored neon and with dripping letters. A tree branch hits her and she falls back. “Lady Gaga,” followed by the song’s title is written on the screen. She begins to hit and punch the man riding the horse to knock him off.

A gang of men in a painted car, drink and holler as they speed by.  In front, a guy drinks his beer and tosses it out the window. Meanwhile, she waits on the shoulder, her motorcycle beside her. The bottle crashes the tip of her hat. Irritated, she wipes it off with her hand. After a man, wearing a handkerchief over his mouth races by, she gets on her motorcycle and chases them.

Under magenta moonlight with spotlight emitting a harsh white light, she and her dancers perform a dance routine in the middle of a front lawn.

Back on the motorcycle, she kicks the air with her foot and lifts her hip off the seat as she charges ahead. Her hat flies off her head.

At about ten o’clock, she catches up to the guy who threw the beer bottle at her. Lit in reptilian green, she climbs over the hood as the words “love junkie” appear on the screen and taps on the windshield. She drinks some of the guy’s beer and throws it on the grass. Then she enters through the passenger side and heaves her hat into his face. Then, lit in vivid pink, she moves over the driver’s side and takes over the controls, causing them to careen from left to right on the road. She’s on the floor, her head by the brakes, trying to get him to move. Eventually, she crowds him out and drives. She hangs out the window on the passenger side, leaving a vivid pink shadow behind.

To distract her, he kisses her stomach, which is lit in reptilian green as she chugs the beer and hangs out the window. She bursts back inside, beer spilling from her chin, lit in vivid pink. In reptilian green, she hangs out the passenger’s side again.

Lit in cerulean blue, she and the dancers continue to perform the routine on the front lawn. In the car, the color switches from an electric forest green to the vivid pink as she caresses the guy in the front seat while driving and puts her butt in his face while he drives, sipping his beer.

Lit in acid red, she arches her back on  the car while the gang of men drive around. She waves her jacket over her head.

While driving, she puts a gun to the guy and he bends his neck. She shoots off the gun when out of the car. Then, she puts her hands over his eyes as he drives. They kiss as she hits the gas pedal. She moves forward in the seat as she notices the fence getting closer to the car. The car spins and hits a tree. The engine catches fire and she lies motionless on the lawn.

She cracks the windshield and bites the another’s guy shirt. She lets out a maniacal laugh as the car hits 120 miles per hour. She chugs beer. Sitting on top the car, she fires gunshots from her heel.

The guy picks up her body and carries her.

She fires the gun towards herself, lit in cerulean blue, carrying her jacket after she has finished dancing. “OOPS!” flashes on the screen.

In her soft pink hat and matching pantsuit, she gets up from the stool and walks down the road, platinum white guitar in hand.

Rating: 5/5

Clad in a leather cut-out bodysuit, Lady Gaga stands on the edge of the road, taking a breather from her ride. Getting hit by a beer bottle, though, is the catalyst for her eventual mayhem.

Through the afternoon and into the night, she chases the man who hit her. In the depths of the night, she swings onto his car. She plies him with her body to get him comfortable before taking it over. Meanwhile, she is fighting her carefree, hedonistic self and murderous urges as she brandishes a gun.

As she unravels, she shoots from inside the car and from the window. She aims her gun at him. He complies and leans back. She forces a crash, which at that moment, she kills her carefree self. The guy survives and carries her body inside his home.

An eclectic 70s b-movie, it begins as a harmless day and then leads into a murderous rage caused by negligent men who believe the world is theirs. However, it subverts the genre by having the woman be the bloodthirsty villain, searching for the reckless sorts who won’t be missed.

The squalid neon, color-coded to the characters, heightens the carnage and madness swirling both inside Gaga’s head and the reality outside of it. The vivid pink, the last remnants of the man’s innocence bleeds into Gaga’s reptilian green, washing out his humanity.

Director: Jonas Akerlund Year: 2017

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