The fifth video “Du hast mich” of the German industrial metal band Rammstein turned out to be truly incendiary in every sense of the word. Symbolism, historical and creative references, a masterfully presented picture of a difficult psychological choice made the work interesting and dynamic, despite the difficult “code” of solving the idea laid down by the group and helping to understand what the clip is about. The band members themselves in an interview said that this work is a tribute to their favorite directors, whose work they highly appreciate.
Gloomy tones, stylish suits that have become fashionable among mafiosi, a characteristic black car: the main action of the clip begins with the arrival of two people, a man and a woman, at an abandoned house, who merge in a passionate kiss before parting. The shots that flashed before this (fire, a woman’s shoe, twisted metal, scraps of clothes) hint that the heroes are unlikely to be able to get out of here unharmed. After the kiss, the hero, taking a pistol with him, goes to the building.
The next thing a man sees is the face of a man covered by a white mask asking him a question. Soon other people join him, also hiding their faces behind masks and also demanding an answer from him to the question posed. But when the hero manages to get up and approach the company, the men begin to take off their masks: this is the group to which the main character belongs. Of course, they do not wish him harm: the men laugh, pleased with the prank, hug their colleague, drink with him. However, the initial creepy message leaves no doubt: these people are not used to joking and throwing words. The hero, smiling, leaves the gun behind his back.
During a drinking bout taking place inside and hidden behind the walls of a building that does not have windows, a woman is waiting for her lover by the car, clearly worried about him. Imagination draws terrible scenes for her, during which the viewer understands that no one threatened the man who arrived, all this happened only in the head of his girlfriend, who is in love with no memory and is afraid of the worst thing: to lose this person.
Again, the gang towers over the person looking at them, whose face remains off-screen. The woman’s anxiety is growing. Beatings pour in on the beholder, at the end of the torture ends with arson. The metaphor of the action lies in the fact that it seems to the woman standing outside the house that the members of the group mocked and killed her beloved, while in fact the man remains alive, and her love and trust in him turned out to be destroyed: it is they who are personified by the burning figure. The choice is made: the hero, having weighed all the pros and cons, remains with the gang.
With anxiety, the woman looks at people leaving the house, a barely noticeable smile appears on her face when she realizes that all fears were in vain and the man is alive. But he does not dare to look at her for a long time. Devotion to the criminal cause requires proof, and the man leaves with his friends without telling the woman a word about the fact that the car is mined and in a moment she will die from the explosion.
The meaning of the Du Hast video lies in two things: devotion to love and dedication to the cause. The heart of a person who gets involved in the life of criminal clans can belong either to the family or “family”. An interpretation of the eternal choice is also possible: to sacrifice oneself by refusing to obey, or to sacrifice a dear person in order to save one’s life.
The meaning of the song and video Rammstein Du hast, almost a quarter of a century after the release, continues to arouse interest among new fans of the group. Their number is growing, because the team, despite its age and long breaks in creativity, is still more alive than all the living.
The story of creation
The song was included in the group’s second studio album in 1997 called “Sehnsucht” and became its hallmark for a long time. Not one concert of the German industrial metal legislators is complete without this composition. Only the song “DEUTSCHLAND”, released relatively recently, was able to compete with the hit, which was the leader in the number of plays among all the creations of musicians for two decades.
The clip directed by Philipp Stolz (the fifth in the story of the group) was filmed in the same year at the airfield in Brandenburg. Everything was in the spirit of “Rammstein”: with pyrotechnics, stunts, in a brutal and ironic style. The main roles were played by the actress Astrid Meierfeld and the band’s drummer Christoph Schneider. Other team members are also involved.
It was not without difficulties and incidents. The shooting was supposed to take place in bright sunlight, but the weather interfered with the plans with rain and gusty winds, so adjustments had to be made.
A stuntman was brought in to shoot the scene with the burning man, dressing him in a special suit covered with flammable materials. After the suit was set on fire, the stunt performer meekly waited for the “Stop, cut!” command, but it never came. It turned out that all members of the film crew were dumbfounded by what they saw and literally lost the power of speech. As a result, the stuntman, after waiting enough time for a beautiful picture, jumped into the pool without a team.
The lead actor suffered second-degree burns as a result of a car explosion. Doing a “debriefing”, members of the film crew came to the conclusion that it was an accident: the pyrotechnics were installed in accordance with all the rules.
The plot line of the video “Du hast” received a slight continuation in the video for another song – “Hailfisch”, which was released already in 2010. This was realized as an episode illustrating the suspicion of the band members in the murder of vocalist Till Lindemann: they think that Schneider doused Till with gasoline indoors at the same airfield.
The translation of the song “Du hast” is not difficult, although there is a small play on words in the text: du hast mich [you (asked) me] – du hasst mich [you hate me].
The phrase in which the words of the verse are added is as follows: “You asked me, but I did not answer.” Although the answer is still heard in the chorus – a distinct “Nien!” (“Not!”). And the question itself is a typical Catholic question to the groom at the wedding: “Do you agree … to be faithful until death do you part?” Another version of the translation is more sarcastic: “Are you really going to be faithful until death do you part!?”.
By the way, the female backing vocals during the tough “No!” sings the opposite: “Ja” (“Yes”) – also irony.
And one more catch: if you pronounce and write the word “scheidet” (separate) in a different way, without the last letter, you get the name of the female genital organ. Then the question turns into an even more mocking “Will you love her vagina even in bad times until she dies?”.
The meaning is simple: the groom clearly does not believe in eternal love and fidelity and, it seems, even despises them, lowering lofty feelings to the level of naturalism – also quite Ramstein-like. It is unlikely that members of the group themselves hold such beliefs. Rather, it is a tribute to the stage image and style, which are always well flavored with irony about various aspects of human life.
The plot and idea of the video
The lead drummer Christoph Schneider gave the following explanation for the plot of the video: “A member of a bandit group betrayed his accomplices because of love for a woman and must be punished for this. But everything happens in a way that no one expected.”
The action of the clip begins with the arrival of lovers to an abandoned house. The characters kiss. Flickering shots of fire, twisted metal, pieces of clothing are designed to push viewers to the idea that everything will end badly for these characters.
The hero, taking a pistol with him, goes to the building and sees a man’s face there, covered with a mask. Sounds like a question. The remaining members of the gang-group who came up also demand an answer from the hero. They suddenly take off their masks, showing that this is all a joke: no one is going to cause harm. On the contrary, friends hug and drink alcohol together. The hero smiles – the gun was not useful.
The woman has been at the building all this time and worries about her lover. She imagines terrible scenes, sees how the hero burns alive. But it’s all just in her imagination.
But now she sees her lover leaving the building, alive and well, and realizes that her fears were in vain. However, the hero looks at her only in passing and immediately looks away, then leaves with friends.
He did not tell her that there was a bomb in the car (he obviously knew about it – he looked at his watch for a specific purpose). The girl dies from the explosion. The gang walks without looking back.
The idea is this: the hero was faced with a choice – to sacrifice himself or to submit to his accomplices, sacrificing his beloved. If we take into account the meaning of the lyrics of the song, then we can conclude that the second option was initially a priority and obvious for the character. He probably always cherished the bandit “family” more than fleeting relationships with the opposite sex.