The Fray's "Run for Your Life" video strikes the right emotional chords but still seems a little flat
"Run for Your Life" is the Fray's the follow-up to "Heartbeat," the debut single from the act's third record, Scars & Stories. The video is directed by Declan Whitebloom, who's worked on videos with Taylor Swift and Sugarland, among others. Although the imagery strikes the right emotional chords, there's no real discernible narrative to speak of, which makes the whole thing seem a little flat.
Make no mistake: "Run for Your Life" has a distinctive cinematic feel, with shots of the band members in various locales (Isaac Slade croons in the middle of the desert, Joe King ambles through an empty baseball diamond, Dave Welsh stands in the middle of the street in a nondescript surburban enclave, and Ben Wysocki sits in an equally unremarkable diner) interspersed with a parade of posturing people each wearing forlorn, faraway looks on their faces, gazing longingly past the camera or otherwise glancing pensively heavenward. But while there's plenty of sizzle, there's not much steak.
The expressions on the characters faces convey a deep sense of contemplation and reflection, suggesting some vastly relatable inner turmoil, yet a universal conflict isn't never quite spelled out, and that leaves us only to conclude that they're all grappling with the everyday foibles of life. That seems a little too nebulous to really latch on to or to really resonate.
Ultimately, it's feels like a missed opportunity to make something more memorable. The source material here is rich -- the song itself is quite strong thematically, dealing with a harrowing loss and then struggling to grieve while overcoming any residual survivor's guilt -- which would seem to lend itself to a more considered interpretation.
This video, however, comes across as a little hackneyed and one-dimensional, like some sort of interchangeable fragrance commercial that's artfully shot but ultimately devoid of any real substance. The clip crescendos with everyone coming together and running (for their lives, presumably) in a pied-piper fashion to parts unknown with the band leading the charge. Maybe we're asking too much from a three minute video. Perhaps, not, though, considering the song manages to convey all that in the same amount of time. Have a look. See what you think.
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