Feist‘s The Reminder was one of the smash albums of 2007. From it came a slew of dancable singles you can’t not have heard and some meticulously choreographed music videos you can’t not have seen. All that being said, now for something completely different: “The Water” is Feist’s second low-key, non dancey video after last years’ nautical puppet fairytale, “Honey Honey“. After all the rampant popularity of her pop-centric work, it’s good to see the other spectrum of her music get some time to shine.
The video is directed by Feist’s boyfriend and fellow member of Broken Social Scene, Kevin Drew. From interpreting music of “The Water” rather than any of the lyrics, Drew conjured up an idea bigger than a simple music video; it’s a short film. His key inspiration came when he met actor Cillian Murphy (Batman Begins) and noticed that he and Feist had similar eyes. “It’s about the beauty of their eyes,” says Drew, “their eyes are going to tell the story.”
The fifteen minute long film contains only one spoken line; all else can be interpreted from the glances of the actors. An elderly father (actor, David Fox) and his son (Murphy) pull a mummy from a frozen lake, the corpse of their wife and mother, played by Feist. Her body is taken home, thawed and somehow restored to life. Feist is the same age as Murphy and much younger than Fox, making for an interesting emotional dynamic between the reunited family. Long, contemplative moments define the film and cumulate to an emotional head when Feist’s song begins to narrate the drama. The rift between mother and son, the tenderness between husband and wife, the languid and beautiful shots of wintertime – all aptly compliment Feist’s music and harness its emotional weight.
Feist is currently recouping from her sudden music superstardom, so while she chills (ha, ha) check out “The Water” it may be the last we see of her for a while. The full film isn’t playing online any more, you can catch it in this years film festival circuit. In the meantime, here’s the film’s finale featuring Feist’s song and a behind the scenes interview with Feist and Drew.