Madonna March Madness: Vote For The Best “Queen Of Pop”-Era Videos
The final, and most current, division in our Madonna March Madness tourney is Madonna’s “Queen Of Pop” era. This period of her career began in 1998 with Madge’s eighth studio album Ray Of Light, and continues to her most recent video “Give Me All Your Luvin’.” Voting in this round is open until Thursday, March 15 at 6 p.m. EST. The four victors to emerge will move on to the next round of voting: the Sweet 16.
MATCHUP #1: “RAY OF LIGHT” VS. “AMERICAN LIFE” The 1998 Jonas Åkerlund-directed clip for “Ray Of Light” won five MTV Video Music Awards (including Video of the Year) and the Grammy for Best Short Form Video. The high-speed time lapse depicts the hustle and bustle of city life all over the globe, including Stockholm, New York, Las Vegas and London, culminating in Madonna getting down at a club in Los Angeles. Today it gets down with “American Life,” one of Madonna’s most overtly political songs but one of her most tame and simplistic videos. Why? Because the original Jonas Åkerlund-directed vid, featuring Madge and a squadron of female soldiers throwing a grenade to a George W. Bush lookalike (it was 2003, after all), was deemed too controversial by the singer herself.
Madonna, “Ray Of Light”
Madonna, “American Life”
MATCHUP #2: “MUSIC” VS. “NOTHING REALLY MATTERS” Following the socially conscious cycle of videos from Ray of Light, “Music” takes Madge in a sillier, more playful direction, in large part thanks to a cameo by Sacha Baron Cohen as rapping limo driver Ali G. The gaudy gold-washed clip from 2000 (another from Jonas Åkerlund) contains a zany animated sequence with visual nods to Madonna’s previous single titles, plus the debut of her cowgirl look. It’s riding against, 1999’s “Nothing Really Matters”, which won the wildcard pick by a single vote. The video features Madonna in a geisha-inspired look, wearing a red kimono designed by Jean-Paul Gaultier.
Madonna, “Nothing Really Matters” [poll id=”1691″]
MATCHUP #3: “FROZEN” VS. “4 MINUTES” Shot in the bleak Mojave Desert, the Gothic “Frozen” earned “Best Special Effects” honors at the MTV Video Music Awards in 1998. Directed by Chris Cunningham, this chilly video depicts Madonna as she transforms into a variety of animals, including a murder of crows, ushering in a new Eastern-religion-influenced era in the Queen of Pop’s career. We’ve matched it against the surreal “4 Minutes”. The lead single from 2008’s Hard Candy and directed by French duo Jonas & François, the clip features Madonna and Justin Timberlake attempting to outrun (and outdance) a flesh-eating “something” that provides for a couple gross-out moments). Will Jamie King’s creative car-top choreography lead it to top “Frozen”?
Madonna, “4 Minutes”
MATCHUP #4: “HUNG UP” VS. “GIVE ME ALL YOUR LUVIN'” Originally slated for direction by David LaChapelle, the video for “Hung Up” was taken over by Johan Renck in 2005. In it, a redheaded Madonna dances opposite her reflection in the studio, wearing the instantly iconic pink leotard and heels. But will those disco-inspired moves stand up against Madonna’s 2012 Super Bowl tie-in “Give Me All Your Luvin'”? Directed by Megaforce, the football-themed clip features Madonna strutting down an alley “Hung Up”-style, a winking triple-nod to Marilyn Monroe, some reckless play with a baby doll and a crucifix worn over a leopard-print bra. With M.I.A. and Nicki Minaj providing backup, what’s not to luv?
Madonna, “Hung Up”
Madonna, “Give Me All Your Luvin'”
Now that you’ve cast your vote for the Top 4 “Queen Of Pop” era Madonna videos, help decide the winners in the three remaining divisions: