Director Floria Sigismondi has delivers her second music video for David Bowie's recent album The Next Day. The singer wrote and conceived the video for the album's title track, with Sigismondi executing his vision in her signature otherworldly style.
The film was quickly pulled from YouTube, before being reinstated with an adult-only rating. Although the video doesn't feature any nudity, the graphic religious imagery apparently warranted enough concern for YouTube to temporarily pull the clip.
Sigismondi, who also directed the first Bowie video released of the album, The Stars (Are Out Tonight) featuring Tilda Swinton, provides a lushly sacrilegious visual around actors Gary Oldman and Marion Cotillard.
The story takes place in a bar attended by prostitutes and members of the Catholic clergy. Money exchanges hands between a cardinal and a redhead, a monk self-flagellates, blood spews from stigmata in Cotillard's hands (below) as she is taken beyond the house of sin, while Oldman as a lascivious priest condemns Bowie, who hovers Christ-like above the carnage, bathed in heavenly light while fronting the band.
"Thank you Gary, thank you Marion, thank you everybody," declares the singer, as the house of sin is transformed into a place of worship. The video ends in a pastiche of a Renaissane-era painting.