Originally published January 28, 2021.
It is a hazy afternoon in late summer. The setting sun shines through the half-closed blinds, casting corrugated shadow across the room and filling the air with a golden hue.
A young girl sits on the floor, leafing through her notebook. Flashback of memories suddenly immerses her in melancholy. She leans back and closes her eyes, letting herself transported to a distant world.
The official music video of “Million Miles” is a nostalgic stroll down memory lane. It is in stark contrast to the black and white live performance video in which the statuesque Angelina cuts an imposing figure with her piercing gaze, and unleashes an emotional tidal wave to sweep away her audience.
Here we see a brooding Angelina walking around the house reminiscing about her grandpa. She looks much younger than her alter ego in the live performance video does, and seems not particularly sad either. The pain of loss has largely faded away. What is left smoldering deep in her heart is a wistful longing to be with her grandpa again.
The storyline is interspersed with her fond memory beautifully reenacted by Juliet and Michael.
The reminiscence takes her to the forest, to the beach – wherever she can find her grandpa in the memory. As night falls, the storyline rises to a crescendo. She walks the pavement barefoot and climbs the hill calling out to the moon in the star-studded sky. Finally, she knows that she is never alone.
The storyline seems to be a page straight out of her diary. It is personal, intimate, and deeply touching. The cinematography is perfectly lyrical. It looks like a montage of her stream of consciousness. Many scenes in the video bear her artistic hallmark. The seaside scene in which she stands on the dune with her grandpa’s shoes beside her – as if he is right next to her in spirit – is the most striking of all.
I am also moved by the ending in which she holds her grandpa’s T-shirt to feel his embrace once again. As the song winds down, she carefully folds the T-shirt and opens her notebook in serenity.
The music video is by no means a grandiose production meant to impress. As Miley Cyrus flashes her bare bum in “Nothing Breaks like a Heart”, Billie Eilish smears fake blood on her face in “Bad Guy”, too many music videos nowadays resort to sensationalism to stand out. I am glad that Angelina possesses the wisdom to stay true to herself, and not to be tempted by an easy path to stardom.
This music video may not attract billions of eyeballs, it for sure will comfort many weary souls.