The new Arcade Fire video for We Used To Wait is a Google Chrome experimental film called The Wilderness Downtown that incorporates Google Maps, Street View, aerial shots and animation to allow the viewer to revisit their childhood home. The result is a stunning and deeply personal video, culminating with the opportunity to compose a letter to your younger self or draw a picture.
The video pushes technology to provoke thought about the two things at the very heart of Ohdeedoh: home and childhood. The invitation to address our younger selves leads us inevitably to read our own childhood against that of our kids. It's the same feeling we get when we watch Where The Wild Things Are or Freaks and Geeks, where nostalgia for our own youth collides with parental anxiety, where we remember those feelings of childhood so profoundly while trying to wrap our heads around the fact that we are the parents now.
While many parents strive to raise their children in the same way that they came of age, others do everything in their power to deliver a radically different experience. As you choose a community, furnish your home, decorate your child's room, prepare their meals, play with them and send them off to school, are you trying to create a trajectory that resembles your own We Used To Wait video or looking to chart another path entirely?
Go home with Arcade Fire and The Wilderness Downtown. Best viewed in Google Chrome on a machine with some oomph.