Hooligan Bands with Philip Andelman for Ryan Adams Video:"Lucky Now"

Partizan Director Philip Andelman tapped Hooligan to edit the music video for “Lucky Now,” the first single from Ryan Adams’ latest solo album “Ashes & Fire” (PAX-AM), released October 10, 2011. Shot completely in black & white, the video visually interprets the song’s retrospective lyrics and the duality of its haunting yet nostalgic tone. 

“It’s always a pleasure working with Barney,” remarks Andelman. “He understands my aesthetic and sensibilities so well and is able to translate that into really sharp edits. He really helped bridge the gap between the way the video was shot and the style I was going for.” 

A virtually empty house and the after-hours grit of Hollywood serve as the vehicle for Adams’ ironic musing, which arrives at a tacit crossroads where both reverie and pangs of the past dissolve into faded memories. Blurring past and present with stylized interplay, the narrative is cut to permeating lyrical elements of duality: inside the arid home where Adams performs "Lucky Now,” we see shots of solitude, cracked walls and shattered windows; abandoning home with a negligent air (open stovetop and fireplace burning), the second setting follows Adams on a late-night cruise where he continually passes a gang of crowbar-wielding femme fatales – literal manifestations of a haunting past. The allegorical worlds converge at the video’s conclusion, as a framed still photo of the Hollywood strip bursts into flames in the bedroom. 

Miller, who has collaborated with Andelman on sundry music videos for Lenny Kravitz, Hilary Duff, Maxwell and the MTV VMA award-winning Fort Minor remarks, “I’m a big advocate of music video as an art form and Phil has always had a way of matching the vibe of a song, while leaving it open to interpretation – as any good filmmaking should. He has a great eye for concepts and composition. With the dolly tempo, ‘slo-mo’ settings and black & white film, his direction set the tone perfectly and gave me a lot to work with as far as bringing the sense of rhythm he wanted in the piece." 

Andelman adds, “This project was interesting because I was going for a very period style of filmmaking using new technology. Shooting at night with the Alexa allows you to open up and see details not ordinarily seen in film, while also permitting faster setups with fewer lights; but the drawbacks are not being able to do certain in-camera tricks like the double exposures I was looking for.”

Miller notes that they we able to achieve a similar “double exposure” look by simply mixing the Alexa footage with some Canon 5D b-roll shots, especially in the chorus where Adams performs under the swirling lights.

“The lighting aesthetic was integral to blurring the two worlds depicted in the narrative. Per Phil’s instruction, we did simple composites in post as opposed to any heavy-handed effects – closer to that backwinding double exposure feel that he was looking for,” concludes Miller. 

Production Company: PARTIZAN
Director: Philip Andelman
Producer: Melissa Larsen
Executive Producer: Jeff Panteleo
Director of Photography: James Frohna
Production Supervisor: Jack Hogan
Production Coordinator: Wendy Zehder

Editor: Barney Miller / Hooligan
Assistant Editor: Erin Bowser / Hooligan
Executive Producer: Sue Wladar / Hooligan

Anne Gordoncuts, work