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Playing for 37 minutes, this visual and musical treat was even honored as the longest music video in history by the Guinness Book of World Records in 2002. Although considered to be one of the great works of Jackson, it did not receive enough promotion and appreciation during the period of its release. However, now with the advent of Internet and YouTube, anybody can have a glimpse of this excellent work. Thus, the focus will be on the musical and visual content of the video, discussing whether or not the two relate, then the narrative part, and finally place the video within the greater context of his life and career to find out whether Jackson is making any statement. Overview In this film, Michael portrays five characters, the Maestro, the Mayor of Normal Valley, the skeleton of Maestro, the Super Ghoul and the Ghoul mayor, all of which was achieved by the magic of extensive makeup. The plot starts with the Mayor of Normal Valley along with some delighted kids and angry parents entering the Scary Land, a creepy and haunted mansion of Maestro. Maestro is a man who lives alone and known to possess supernatural powers. The introduction of Michael Jackson wearing a hood and a skeleton mask does prove him as a master of disguise. The Mayor accuses maestro for scarring kids with non-existent ghost stories. He warns him and tries to drive him off, but Maestro challenges him and calls for a game between two of them, with the first one to become scared leaving the game and leave the other undisturbed. This scenario provides apt setting for Jackson to exhibit all his dancing moves, stunning make-ups, etc., thereby relating both visual and musical elements. ...
The film ends with the Mayor getting scared and throwing himself out of the window, when self destructed Maestro once again appears as a monster. Musical and Visual elements Jackson is always known for creating awesome music videos, to bring to life his musical creations. Primarily a song writer, Jackson came up with music videos to elevate the song further and reach more people, and also vice versa with the success of the videos further improving the sales of his music album and also increasing their popularity. In the case of this Ghost video, Jackson primarily used three songs, 2 Bad from the album HIStory: Past, Present and Future, Book I, HIStory, and Is it Scary and Ghosts, both from the album Blood on the Dance Floor: HIStory in the Mix. Apart from the usual utilization of musical equipments, Jackson has aptly incorporated the marching and stomping sounds, which turns into a bass rhythm creating enough resonance. Incorporation of sneezing, coughing, grunting and stomping into the music composition is unique and classy on the part of Jackson. Thus, the track showcases all of Jackson’s trademarks, funky bass lines nicely mixed with voice sounds, which got reflected in the music video as well, thereby creating a correlation between musical and visual aspects. That is, the use of voice sounds automatically got “translated” in the visuals, as Jackson as part of choreography included or performed all those sounds. “Even their coughs and sneezes are choreographed and incorporated into the rhythm of music.”2 Apart from this relation between visual and musical elements, other visual elements stand alone, but contribute optimally to elevate the video. In Jackson’s style, the film featured innovative special effects as well as make-up effects
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