"Films of Innocence" - U2


Track Listing:

Bonus Track (Streaming Only):

Background Information

“Films of Innocence” was a video from U2, announced on November 18, 2014, and released through iTunes on December 9th, 2014. The video was released in two formats, $12.99 for the high definition 1080p version, and $9.99 for the regular definition version. (US Dollars). The video lists Jefferson Hack as the director of the overall video.

The video was a visual representation of the album Songs of Innocence, much the same as “Linear” had been for No Line on the Horizon. For “Films of Innocence” U2 approached twelve different urban artists and asked that they create a video inspired by U2’s Songs of Innocence. Of these, 11 make up the final video, and the twelfth “The Crystal Ballroom” remains a streaming digital release only through u2.com.

The plot summary at iTunes is as follows:

11 of the world’s most acclaimed urban artists unveil their work through a collection of art films, inspired by U2’s Songs of Innocence. Taking the political murals of Northern Ireland as a reference point, U2 pioneered the project to celebrate the unique democratic power of urban art. Oliver Jeffers, Robin Rhode, D*Face, Mode 2, Chloe Early, Ganzeer, Vhils, Maser, ROA, DALeast, and Todd James make up this global multidisciplinary group project. Chosen for their undisputed ability to capture the imaginations of their audiences, the artists were given complete creative freedom to showcase their personal responses to U2’s music, through a series of part-animated, part live action films. The result is an exhilarating display of diversity in approach, style and commentary. Powerful and cognizant, their works scale the globe, play with time, and weave between heightened reality and animated dreamscapes. United for the first time in film, the eleven international artists have taken their work from the streets to the screen. These original works of video art transpose their visions from the physical to the digital and are collected here together as a visual counter-point to the album, a set of unique and compelling Films of Innocence.

In advance of the release of the video on iTunes, U2 released the 12 videos online through different media outlets. Each video launched at 4pm GMT on that day.

  • The Crystal Ballroom directed by Conor Harrington appeared on u2.com as a subscriber exclusive
  • Every Breaking Wave directed by Robin Rhode appeared on Complex
  • Cedarwood Road directed by Maser appeared on Dazed
  • Iris (Hold Me Close) directed by Chloe Early appeared on Dezeen
  • The Troubles directed by James Todd appeared on Juxtapoz
  • California (There is No End to Love) directed by D*Face appared on The Nerdist
  • Raised by Wolves directed by Vhils appeared on Nowness
  • Song for Someone directed by Mode 2 appeared on NPR
  • This is Where You Can Find Me Now directed by DALeast appeared on Paper
  • Volcano directed by Ganzeer appeared on Pitchfork
  • Sleep Like a Baby Tonight directed by ROA appeared on Rolling Stone
  • The Miracle (of Joey Ramone) directed by Oliver Jeffers appeared on Stereogum

In all cases, the video was removed after a 24 hour viewing period ended, making purchase of the video the only way to see those videos from that point onwards. Where the original page remains, we have linked the entries above, as some of the content with the visual artists such as interviews remain in place.

By accident the version of “Every Breaking Wave” initially uploaded to Complex featured an alternate, earlier version of the song, and you could hear an audio watermark over top of the song – at the start and end of the track a voice says “This is a watermark for Robin Rhode”. This video with the incorrect music was quickly removed and the proper version with the finished audio was uploaded later that day.

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