‘thank u, next’ stillA tribute to early 2000s cinema
By Jerrison Oracion, Senior Columnist
Ariana Grande’s recent album thank u, next is still one of the top albums in terms of sales. One highlight of the album is the title track, which is my favourite song on it.
The music video of this song, directed by Grande’s regular collaborator Hannah Lux Davis, not only references Grande’s former boyfriends but also some references popular films of the 2000s—with a few surprise guests from that era. These films are part of our generation. Out of all the films that were referenced, I have seen three of them.
The opening scene of “thank u, next” shows people gossiping and it alludes to a scene from Mean Girls (2004). It includes an appearance by Troye Sivan. The scrapbook that we see in the video has actual pictures of Grande’s former boyfriends if you look very carefully.
The Mrs. Claus dance scene from the film is also referenced in the video and Kris Jenner filming the performance may be a reference to the famous “You’re doing amazing, sweetie” moment. While it might seem like Lindsay Lohan appears in the music video, she is not actually in it.
The video next references the cheerleading classic Bring It On (2000), which includes Matt Bennett reprising his role as Cliff from a previous Grande music video. There is a small reference to 13 Going on 30 (2004), the romantic comedy starring Jennifer Garner, when Grande drops off a dollhouse in front of a mansion.
There are a lot of references to Legally Blonde (2001) including Elle’s dog, the Macbook that she uses which brings back memories, Jennifer Coolidge (who appeared in a lot of movies in the 2000s) reprising her role as Paulette, the “bend and snap” move, and the UPS man.
The license plate on Grande’s car reads “7 Rings,” which is the title of another hit single from thank u, next. The beauty shop scene might also be a reference to Beauty Shop (2005), and Grande’s brother Frankie Grande can be seen as one of the stylists in the shop.
Some of the other people seen in the music video include Mean Girls stars Jonathan Bennett and Stefanie Drummond, playing their original film roles in the video, and Grande’s former Victorious co-stars Elizabeth Gillies and Daniella Monet. It’s a very fun music video and after you watch it, you might like to rewatch the films that were referenced in the music video.