One song: childlike innocence or uncomfortable irony?

Here’s two clips that use the same track (“After School Crush”)  in similar contexts but to achieve different storytelling goals. The first is a trailer for a Dutch film called Briefgeheim (Secret Letter), a story about 11-year-old Eva who because of  family tensions at home runs away to live  in her best friend’s attic. The beginning of the trailer shows her playing with friends and is happy, sunny, and innocent.  The track’s simple childlike melody on bells and glockenspiel accompanied by acoustic guitar, mandolin, piano, organ, and light percussion underscore the mood.


The second clip is by comedy duo Tim and Eric for HBO presents: Funny or Die.  This time the track is used ironically to underscore a dysfunctional relationship between step dad and son.  In this context the track’s innocence is tongue-in-cheek and comes off as totally over-the-top. By trying to pull heartstrings it makes the whole thing even more hilariously uncomfortable. (The track is used as a bookends to start and end the segment so the middle is edited out.)


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