The Ballad of Mona Lisa – Panic! At The Disco Video revised

My favourite music videos have always been the ones that work together with the song to tell a plot driven short story. When I first listen to a song, often I have the idea for a music video beginning to form in my head. Once that idea is solid, I can’t see anything else for that song. If an official video is released, I immediately dislike it if it’s not how I imagined it. The Ballad of Mona Lisa is one of those cases.

 

This is the official video which is nothing like what I had in my head. It is a plot driven short story that works with the song, but it’s not what I had cemented in my head when I saw it.

Below I have transcripted my idea for the video for The Ballad Of Mona Lisa.

Setting: 18th Century masked ball
Characters: Guy A: An innocent young man, developing feelings for Girl: A girl looking for freedom from her dark past and Guy B: A manipulative, controlling man who has a jealous anger problem.

Instrumental at the start
Guy A walking through an extravagant masked ball looking around, finds a girl, asks her to dance and leads her onto the floor

‘She paints her fingers with a close precision’
Close up of their hands grasping as the dance begins

‘He starts to notice empty bottles of gin And takes a moment to assess the sins she’s paid for’
Starts to notice bruises on her that are faded/covered with make-up, looks at her shocked

On the drum beats
He spins her away then pulls her in close

‘A lonely speaker in a conversation’
He tries to ask her about the bruises

‘Her words were swimming through his ears again’
She looks away and says they’re nothing

‘There’s nothing wrong with just a taste of what you’ve paid for’
Over her shoulder he can see Guy B leant against the wall watching them poisonously

Instrumental section
Guy B pushes off the wall and walks towards them

‘Say what you mean, Tell me I’m right And let the sun rain down on me’
Guy B weaves through the crowd and reaches the couple. He taps the girl on the shoulder, asking to cut in

‘Give me a sign I want to believe’
The girl looks helplessly at Guy A as Guy B pulls her away

‘Whoa, Mona Lisa, You’re guaranteed to run this town’
Guy A watches powerless as Guy B and the girl dance

‘Whoa, Mona Lisa, I’d pay to see you frown’
Girl looks over at Guy A and smiles but Guy B spins her away

‘He senses something, call it desperation, Another dollar, another day’
Guy A and girl smiling at each other across the room as people dance between them

‘And if she had the proper words to say, She would tell him’
Guy B appears, slipping a hand around the girl’s waist and whispers something to her

‘But she’d have nothing left to sell him’
Girl quickly looks at Guy A, shocked

Instrumental
Girl grabs her skirts and quickly walks out. Guy B looks wickedly at Guy A. Guy A turns to follow the girl

‘Say what you mean, Tell me I’m right And let the sun rain down on me’
Girl storming down the corridor, rips off her mask, eyes watering

‘Give me a sign, I want to believe’
Guy A appears, running after her, catches her arm and she turns around.

‘Whoa, Mona Lisa, You’re guaranteed to run this town’
Guy A quickly kisses the girl.

‘Whoa, Mona Lisa’
Girl pushes him back, shaking her head and runs off

‘I’d pay to see you frown’
Guy A stands shocked and runs his fingers through his hair as Guy B walks past him, putting on a cloak and going outside

‘Mona Lisa’
Guy stood on a balcony. holding the girl’s mask, looking out into a garden

‘Say what you mean, Tell me I’m right And let the sun rain down on me’
Spots Guy B below with the girl, having an angry conversation

‘Give me a sign, I want to believe’
Girl tries to walk away and spots Guy A on the balcony and smiles up at him

‘Whoa, Mona Lisa’
Her smile turns to shock as she sinks to the ground

‘You’re guaranteed to run this town’
Guy A leans over the balcony and screams, turning to run inside

‘Whoa, Mona Lisa’
Guy B cleaning the knife he stabbed the girl with and turning away

‘I’d pay to see you frown’
Girl’s body on the floor as the blood stain spreads

‘Say what you mean,Tell me I’m right And let the sun rain down on me’
Guy A tearing down the stairs, past people and out into the gardens.

‘Give me a sign, I want to believe’
Guy A falls to his knees in front of her body cradling the girl’s body to him

‘There’s nothing wrong with just a taste of what you’ve paid for’
Guy B walking away down the street saying this line

I don’t know if I would ever make this music video, I don’t know if the music is protected by copyright or if I would get sued. I would really like to make it though and maybe make a series of music videos the way I imagined them.

 

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