The ’80s comparisons were easy to make with Bruno Mars’ “Locked Out of Heaven” single, since the thing smacked of classic Police and other early new wave acts—we still say The Romantics’ “Talking in Your Sleep” is the biggest reference point. But the song’s music video takes things even farther with the Reagan-era retro, as the video plays as if on choppy, decades-old VHS, with grainy imagery, lines of static and rampant color prisming, all of which will make you alternately super-nostalgic and super-anxious for DVD’s to hurry up and get invented already. Plus, Bruno has a Jheri curl.
Does it work? Well, there’s a raw energy to the performance video that fits the the nerviness of the song, though the cutaway scenes to Bruno and his friends (Smeezington and otherwise) outside, rolling dice and smoking cigars, make for minor incoherence. It definitely fits the whole “Bruno doing what he wants to do!” narrative of this album regardless—it’s pretty doubtless that Mars had fun making the thing, and goofing around with it in the editing room.