Being the pretty one in the room isn’t always an easy ride. That’s the message behind Beyonce‘s song/video “Pretty Hurts,” from her fifth, self-titled album that dropped unexpectedly at midnight last night. “We shine a light on what ever’s worst, perfection is the disease of a nation,” Bey sings woefully on the chorus of the Sia co-write.
The visual for the song underscores the despair behind the glitter of beauty pageants. It also lets King B’s alter ego Miss 3rd Ward step out into the cruel spotlight, after having only been “featured” on Jay Z‘s Magna Carta Holy Grail track “Part II (On The Run).”
One of the multitude of masterstrokes with this whole Beyonce audio/visual project is getting screen legend Harvey Keitel to play the perfectly glitzed-out pageant host in the “Pretty Hurts” video. Known for his tough guy roles in films like Taxi Driver, Thelma & Louise, Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction, Keitel appears here decked out in a shiny silver jacket, where he puts pageant contestant Miss 3rd Ward on the spot by asking her the question, “What is your aspiration in life?”
Watch the moving clip above to see Bey’s simple, emotional response, then catch the lyrics to “Pretty Hurts” over at Direct Lyrics.
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