“Heart,” A Music Video That Moves Unlike Any Other

This Japanese music video for group_inou‘s “Heart” by AC部 is pretty incredible. I can’t find any information in English about the directors, but they appear to be a Japanese collective comprised of three artists. If you know more about them, please share.

Some would argue that the video is incredible for all the wrong reasons–trippy, creepy, freaky!–but the unorthodox style works because the directors sell us their vision with complete conviction. In an animation world where everybody strives to make characters move according to established rules and principles, it’s refreshing to see animators betray every convention of the natural world–even if that vision is at odds with the “correct” way of animating. It’s always exhilarating when an animator establishes their own rules of movement and has the ability to execute those ideas with clarity and skill. AC pulls off that feat in “Heart.”

Below is another piece of animation by AC:

(Thanks, David OReilly)


  • http://vistalgian-dragon.deviantart.com/ Amari Harkness

    That was…interesting in a very odd and entertaining way. Is there a translation of the lyrics?

  • http://www.rauchbrothers.com Tim Rauch

    pretty wild – and fun – for all the reasons you cite. I especially like the hula hoops and underwear piece.

  • http://Robyulfo.com/infinityballproductions.com Rob Yulfo

    This reminds me of the ‘Bobby and Billy’ shorts on Liquid Television.

  • Russell H

    The faces look uncannily like those seen on propaganda posters from Asian totalitarian regimes, such as pre-1945 imperial Japan, China during the Cultural Revolution, and present-day North Korea.

  • http://dana-draws.blogspot.com Dana T

    Loved every second of it.

  • Doug

    I love this. I thinks its crazily wonderful and I think it works so well with the music. Would love a translation but then again who really cares … its fantastic!

  • http://www.frankpanucci.com Frank Panucci

    Re:
    –it’s refreshing to see animators betray every convention of the natural world—even if that vision is at odds with the “correct” way of animating–

    Yes. I’ve seen more than enough Cal Arts-style bags-of-fat-floating-underwater secondary motion and four types of rigidly-defined body language.

  • http://none Barry Rodges

    The butt movement at 1:07 is priceless!

  • http://jojoali930.blogspot.com/ Joe Chiang

    Your review of this video of someone breaking the rules, but executing it with clarity, is very well said…thx, great video!!

  • Jeffrey Simonetta

    This style kind of reminds me of the Katamari Damacy games.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kgrnIBlxZCk

    I’m curious if some of the artists behind the opening sequence played a part in making the music videos.

  • barney_miller

    Awesome video! It’s great to see people having fun with style and technique.

    It’s also great to see people like Frank Panucci use it as an opportunity to make non sensical references to a supposed Cal Arts style.

    Great observation Frank!

    • http://www.frankpanucci.com Frank Panucci

      Okay, “Disney”-style then: That one very distinctive, well-worn style of movement in 2D animation that’s good sometimes, but not every time, please.

  • The Gee

    OK. If those giving praise to this are serious, I’ll bite.

    If they aren’t serious then I envy your subdued sarcasm skills.

    I watched the commercial first and immediately thought: at least they probably used a metronome, for timing and inspiration for the movement. Then I watched part of the music video.

    Yeah, it breaks rules but it at least they timed it out.

    I just wish the animation in the music video didn’t make it obvious that this is done digitally and the animation was done on layers. I’d rather not see that. I guess the innovations* didn’t fool my eyes enough to make me not get past that, or the fact that someone had problems designing and animating posteriors and legs.

    * don’t give them a standing ovation for innovation, please.

  • Iritscen

    This is pretty fascinating. I’m reminded in a general way of the Café de Oni music video that has gotten a fair number of views from the Western world:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4nxt5hGMJrg

  • http://art-candy.blogspot.com/ Andrea

    I loved this! I think it’s pleasing to look at and interesting. It has a very emotional quality to it as well, wish I could understand the lyrics.

  • Shmorky

    This is fantastic! I’m changing my That Apple avatar to put one of these faces on it.

  • tedzey

    Am I the only one who HATED this short! Innovative? Breaking all the rules? Have you guys heard of art-house films SO deep and “innovative” that it’s not even entertaining? That’s what this short film was like! There’s a reason why animators have to follow the rules of movement, because it’s clear and easy to follow! This was frustrating to follow, and it has nothing to do with me not understanding the language. There are films in french and spanish I watch and have no clue what they’re saying, but at least the visuals allow me to follow the story! I was under the impression after watching the underwear commercial that I was in for a treat, but boy! was I wrong!

    And then there’s the argument, “But South Park is a crappily animated show that doesn’t follow the rules and it’s entertaining.” Guess what, that show has well executed stories that makes sense. You need to have a good balance of story and technique to make for an entertaining short or show! All the great shorts have a good balance of those qualities! Good animation can follow with a decent story like the golden age disney films, just as much as bad animation for a very good story like south park!

  • http://www.tomstazer.com torgotom

    april fool?

  • Zach braff

    looks like amid has a boy crush on david orielly! David sends amid a link. Amids hands get clammy, he shouts “OMG” “IZ DAVID OREEALY.iz i blushing? IS I BLUSHING???? OMG.” “IZ SO DIFFERENT DAVID. YOU OPEN ME UP TO NEW THINGS…I LIKE TRYING NEW THINGS”. this would have never seen the light of idea if zach braff were to send it. Well I guess thats how much amid fell for the indie sounds of the garden state soundtrack…which im guessing is pretty hard. LET GO! LET GO! JUMP IN! ITS SO AMAZING!

    • Spencer

      Are you on crack?

  • http://olvesblog.blogspot.com/ Olve

    Ah. Saw Group Inou live in Tokyo some years ago. They’ve got a lot more trippy music videos like this.

  • http://www.artware.mx Arturo

    What’s with that Betty Boop clip? (apparently it only appears when you access from the feed)

  • Brandon

    Bizarre. It reminds me of Katamari Damacy as well.. which is equally bizarre. I love seeing those faces move without the form of the head changing. Very odd, reminds me of 80s music videos.