Ride (2012 film)

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Lana Del Rey's Ride Title card.png
Title card used in the video
Directed by Anthony Mandler
Produced by Heather Heller
Written by Lana Del Rey
Starring Lana Del Rey
Ian Seeberg
Scott The Wall
Kevin Peterson
Josh Kurplus
Brian Harlow
Shawn Donohue
Steve Buchanan
Will Thomas
Music by Lana Del Rey
Distributed by Black Hand Cinema
Release date
October 12, 2012
Running time
Country United States


Music video
"Ride" on YouTube

"Ride" is an American short music film written by and starring Lana Del Rey. The film was directed by Anthony Mandler and is over 10 minutes long, it premiered onto VEVO on October 12, 2012. The film received mixed to positive reviews, mainly due to it featuring controversial topics such as prostitution, affairs and violence.


The film opens to Artist (played by Del Rey) in a cowboy-influenced outfit while swinging on a tire swing in the middle of the desert, it then cuts to show her grazing the streets in streetwalker attire while attempting to hitch hike as a monologue by her speaking about why she started prostituting plays in the background. Artist reveals that all her family and friends disapprove of her lifestyle, but she simply doesn't care, she also states that she's always been different and had seen her life turning out this way from a young age because she "was born to be the other woman". As Del Rey says this, clips of her riding with bikers and being with her "clients" play, the song "Ride" by Del Rey begins to play shortly after.

Artist has multiple returning clients, or "lovers" (played by Ian Seeberg, Scott The Wall, and Kevin Peterson, respectively), that she eventually runs away from her home and lives her life out on the open road with. All is smooth sailing at first, Artist gets to enjoy her new life living in motels, riding bikes in deserts, and performing in local dive bars, until one night one of her lovers tries to sexually assault her and Artist kills him in the middle of the desert, at the end of the film, Artist declares, "I am fucking crazy. But I am free."[1]

Cast and crew[edit]

Reception and release[edit]

Background and release[edit]

Wearing a Native American war bonnet (pictured), Del Rey aims a revolver at her temple while singing "I've got a war in my mind" in the video for "Ride".[2][3][4]

"National Anthem" director Anthony Mandler teamed up with Del Rey to produce the video for "Ride."[5][6] The video was a 10-minute-long short film and gathered an audience of 400,[6] on October 10, Del Rey premiered the music video for "Ride" at the Aero Theatre in Santa Monica, California.[7]

Critical reception[edit]

NME journalist Lucy Jones compared Del Rey's role in "Ride" to Blanche DuBois' role in A Streetcar Named Desire, calling it a "neurasthenic wreckage." Further reflecting on the Lolita persona, Jones says, "Del Rey's character atrophies into prostitution, seeking safety in other people" throughout the video, which she labels dis-empowering for women, while Del Rey's "suggested acceptance of a young woman selling sex for a roof over her head" might be seen as antifeminist,[2] a word attributed to Del Rey's work since "Video Games."[8][9] OK! and Vibe also noted the prostitution themes,[10] the latter saying, "Never has the art of prostitution ever looked so, cinematic."[11]

Jones also noted similarities between "Ride" and the video for "Born to Die", specifically Del Rey's scarlet talons, red Converse, inverted crucifix earrings, Stars and Stripes flags, tattoos, and guns.[2] Jones speculated that the monologue was not autobiographical, so much as a jab at her critics.[2] Pitchfork considered the metaphor-festooned monologue "moving."[3] Writers for the New York Observer commented: "As a statement of purpose, it’s absolutely, refreshingly meaningless, not purporting to make any statement beyond provocation; as a creation myth for whoever Lana Del Rey is, it’s tremendously watchable. She strives for little more than that."[12] Amanda Dobbins of New York concluded that the final scene belonged in Del Rey's hall of fame, stating, "it is really something."[13] MTV Buzzworthy's David Greenwald contrasted "Ride" with films such as Easy Rider, mentioning that while it contained traditional American themes, it manages to retain credibility as a pop song on par with Nicki Minaj and Lady Gaga.[14]


Controversy arose shortly after the release of the film due to its glamorization of prostitution, violence, affairs, and its featuring of religious symbols like Indian headdresses, the scene in the film where Del Rey holds a gun to her head and declares she is tired of feeling "fucking crazy" was given a mixed reception from critics due to its featuring of the Indian headdress, but is seen as one of her most famous quotes due to its impact in modern-day pop culture with shirts, phone cases, and other merchandise being made to say the line.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Boone, John. "Lana Del Rey Premieres New Music Video at a Movie Theater, Leaves Fans Sobbing With Joy". E!. Retrieved 11 October 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c d Jones, Lucy (October 12, 2012). "Lana Del Rey Channels Blanche DuBois In Music Video For 'Ride'". NME. Retrieved March 16, 2017. 
  3. ^ a b Pelly, Jenn. "Watch Lana Del Rey Find "True Freedom" in Her "Ride" Video: Motorcycles, Guns, Art, Men, Liberation". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved 12 October 2012. 
  4. ^ Rosen, Christopher (12 October 2012). "Lana Del Rey's 'Ride' Video: 'I Believe In The Country America Used To Be'". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 12 October 2012. 
  5. ^ Idolator Staff. "Lana Del Rey Revs Up For Her "Ride" Video Premiere". Idolator. Retrieved 11 October 2012. 
  6. ^ a b Martins, Chris. "Born to 'Ride': Lana Del Rey Longs for Leather Daddies in New 10-Minute Short Film". Spin. Retrieved 11 October 2012. 
  7. ^ "Lana Del Rey premieres her new Ride music video in Santa Monica". Glamour. Retrieved October 11, 2012. 
  8. ^ Savage, Mark (27 January 2012). "Love, the law, and Lana Del Rey". BBC. Retrieved 12 October 2012. 
  9. ^ Rice, Paul. "Lana Del Rey's Feminist Problem". Slant Magazine. Retrieved 12 October 2012. 
  10. ^ "Lana Del Rey plays a prostitute in new 'Ride' video, has some old truckers for customers". OK!. Retrieved 12 October 2012. 
  11. ^ Higgins, Keenan. "New Videos: Lana Del Rey, Gucci Mane x Birdman, Daz Dillinger, Ace Hood, Project Pat x Nasty Mane x Juicy J". Vibe. Retrieved 13 October 2012. 
  12. ^ D'Addario, Daniel. "Lana Del Rey Debuts Ten-Minute Music Video". New York Observer. Retrieved 12 October 2012. 
  13. ^ Dobbins, Amanda. "‘Ride’ Video: Lana Del Rey Has a Gun, a Tire Swing, Curly Hair". Vulture. Retrieved 12 October 2012. 
  14. ^ Greenwald, David. "New Video: Lana Del Rey, 'Ride'". MTV. Retrieved 13 October 2012. 

External links[edit]