"Mr. Overtime" by Punks Jump Up : a road trip with Maxime Bruneel.
Maxime Bruneel is a French director known for his psychedelic animated music videos and the colored world of his live visuals. More particularly he directed "Your Love" by Aston Shuffle, "Jeez Louise" by Secret Squirrel and "Variation sur Marilou" by Alain Bashung.
After collaborating with Universal and Ministry of Sound, English label MODA's turn to ask him to direct Punks Jump Up's next promo, an eccentric English duo working on the title "Mr. Overtime" with Chromeo's singer "DAVE 1."
Londoner DJ duo created in 2002, Punks Jump Up delivers a dancing and definitely sophisticated electro pop. Over the years, the group multiplied collaborations with references from London's underground, proof of the quality of the group. Title "Mr. Overtime" is the opportunity for a new collaboration with Dave 1 from Chromeo and for Maxime Bruneel to sign a road-trip-shaped music video.
The Music Video produced by Chez Eddy and directed by Maxime Bruneel is true to the aerial and subtle sounds of the group. Punks Jump Up wanted a music video inspired by "Alphabet City", a movie by Amos Poe. (Alphabet City (1984) Trailer – YouTube)
The idea was to go back to this 80's grain with a car driving in the fog, the night. Obvious references to this world are David Lynch's films, "Mulholland Drive" and "Lost Highway".
For Maxime Bruneel, the ambition was to recreate this ambiance, but revisited in a 2012 way not to fall back in a repetition of a 80's video.
Entirely animated with a very minimal render, black background, flashy colors in 2D, Maxime injected graphics, designed typos and perverted the colors scale to reach to something definitely current and more pop.
The pitch is rather simple : four young people travel the country in a Stang with radio sound, they dance in the open-top car until they hit a strange beast. In the accident, characters merge with the beast whom they bear the head then.
To ensure that the music would match the car scenes, Maxime did a quick editing of scenes from films like "Drive" by Nicholas Winding Refn, "Death Proof" by Q. Tarantino, "Somewhere" by Sofia Coppola, "True Romance" by Tony Scott, "Mulholland Drive" and "Lost Highway" by David Lynch, synchronized with the music by PJU. A little like a crazy sampler, the director didn't hesitate (or didn't resist the temptation!) to play with scenes, camera angles, use this material to create his own musical road trip! The result appeared so promising that the idea of a real cut, synchronized with the sound, by taking all live images that he liked, started to take shape. What was supposed to be a simple test at first became the starting point of the music video. The editing was then left to Manuel Coutant with whom they released more real than life animatics, with live pictures true sensations, linked to the images taken from the selected films.
This direction system happen to be very practical as it enabled to define a very strong ambiance, definitive timing and energy of the shots from the start. From the live cut, Maxime extracted the subject and the camera movements.
He then redesigned by re-using the organization of the image (perspective, etc.). For the animation, he chose to direct a faithful interpretation more than rotoscoping which would have been too smooth and cold.
The result is very much rich and stylized. Characters are 2D animated on Flash, the beast was created from a bear, an octopus and a bulldog! It was then modeled in 3D and animated on Maya, as well as the car, then composed in After Effects.
The result lives up to the director's expectations who signs an elegant promo with numerous cinematographic references who perfectly matches the band's spirit.
April 24, 2012