The video for Rolling in the Deep by Adele was directed by Sam Brown and premiered on Channel 4 on 3rd December 2010. This video shows Adele as the singer who is lip syncing, a ‘faceless’ dancer and a ‘faceless’ drummer. By faceless, I mean that you never see their faces close up like you do Adele. She sits alone in a large room that has some scattered furniture, peeling wallpaper and a crumpled sheet of paper taped to the wall behind her. This makes the room look abandoned and deserted while Adele is dressed in a classy dress and nice hair style.
A lot of the mis en scene focusses on destruction and decrepitude in terms of both locations and props. A more obvious example of this is shots of a town build from paper which, as the video progresses, is set on fire by sparks and burns to ashes. Also worth mentioning is the staircase location with a hanging board that has a pile of smashed crockery at the bottom and has a continuous stream of plates and cups being thrown at it. Apart from this running theme, the director has decided to put a large focus on the video’s lighting, making it interesting and dynamic in more static and stationary shots where the subject doesn’t more or do anything eye catching. Most of the lighting looks simple and just convenient however, the use of fluorescents in the dancer’s room makes the white powder stand out and makes a very contrasting colour palate to the shots in the room with Adele which uses warmer lighting and the room is a warm colour too. This contrast makes the video more interesting to watch and will hold the attention of watchers as the shots won’t all run together.
By using visual aids, they bring focus to the beat of the song. They do this with a light above the drum kit that flashes every time the drummer plays the strongest beat and they also use a floor covered with glasses of water that ripple when they are hit by sound waves at every beat.
To make the shots of Adele sitting in a chair singing more dynamic, the camera is always panning and the edit displays various shot angles too. This technique of always having the camera panning and/or zooming makes the video flow better and the shot more animated.
The beat of the song is a strong focal point for the video and as well as the previous methods I have mentioned, the director also has the shots edited to the beat, meaning that the edit becomes quicker at the climax of the song. The fast edit really builds up the song and grips the audience. The shots have also been chosen to contrast each other by cutting between different locations with their contrasting lighting and shots that are in real time and ones that are in slow motion, like the dancer.