The famous Shorewood High School Lip Dub Video (Hall and Oats)

This was a project by a high school video class. As you watch, you'll see objects doing things that they should not do as students take turns singing a Hall and Oats song while they walk/dance along the halls of their high school.

The entire thing is filmed backwards, which explains how paper air planes unfly and bubbles unblow and baloons unpop and stuff unfalls. But if you watch the lip syncing students, you'll notice that they are lip syncing correctly ... their lips are matching the words as well as lip syncing does. But how did they make this happen if they were filming backwards?

Watch the video:

Go back and look especially at the girl with the green shirt after 3:10. Her mouth/lips match the words perfectly. (The other singers do as well, but this is the most visible, obvious case).

The way they did this was to create a set of lyrics that when sung, filmed, and then video-reversed, would produce the correct mouth and lip movements to match the properly played song. So instead of singing "you make my dreams come true" they sing "weet ma smed um oom" or something. They dance along the halls backwards singing this strange version of the song, taping, then dub the song in with the tape running backwards so it looks and sounds right.

(And by "tape" I mean digital video object of whatever kind it was.)

In the meantime, the kids in the background do stuff that will look odd when reversed, like dropping pieces of paper with the words to the song on it, or throwing paper airplanes, and such.

The bit at the end is, apparently, not redubbed and is meant to be weird and freaky.

Hall and Oats know about this and are pleased.

(Yes, yes, I did watch the Rachel Ray show and thusly learned how this was done. So you didn't have to, OK? But it is interesting, so go ahead.)

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I think there may be some hope for today's kids. Damn.

By James Brennan (not verified) on 19 Jan 2010 #permalink

Nice video, when I was in High School, 7 or 8 years ago, I was in a TV/Video production ROP class (ROP was a great program)we did a video a lot like this. Same idea of how we got there and the whole shabang, only we did it in a much smaller group.

Shoots like this are great for learning composition of film/video. You HAVE to have your story boarding really well planned out. Timing is one thing that is pretty tough to get down correctly in story boarding, and doing a reverse-play (especially uncut)requires almost perfect timing. Using a song, though, gives you something to use as a reference for your timing. It's obviously much easier going forward (the reference points are pretty easy), but going backwards requires, well, subtraction!

It's "urk smok smeard kyam yem oo" for the record...