Fun. Go To War In New ‘Some Nights’ Video

Following their Movie Awards Performance, Fun. debut a stirring new clip on MTV.

Fun. hit the battlefield in their new “Some Nights” video, which premiered Monday (June 4) on MTV. Though this isn’t your run-of-the-mill military clip (pay attention, Katy Perry ), mostly because it’s not entirely clear whether the war unfolding around them is real or simply playing out in their minds.

Because sure, the clip very artfully showcases a battle between Union and Confederate soldiers, with Fun. performing on a makeshift stage in the middle of the firefight — a nod to the tune’s military-esque drum cadence — but it’s more probable in this instance that the warriors (and, really, the war itself) are metaphorical, representing the eternal struggle between two very similar, yet diametrically opposite, sides of frontman Nate Ruess’s brain.

After all, “Some Nights” is very much about the inner battle he — and most of us, really — faces on a daily (or nightly) basis: the challenge of trying to find a balance between wildly different desires, of giving in to basic instincts one moment, then attempting to walk the moral tightrope the next. There is genuine guilt and frustration and even actual anger … he can’t believe he acts the way he does, and yet, he cannot imagine acting any other way. And above all else, he truly can’t comprehend how one person can be this complex, this hell-bent on destruction. Like he sings in the song’s opening verse “Some nights, I stay up cashing in my bad luck/Some nights, I call it a draw/Some nights, I wish that my lips could build a castle/Some nights, I wish they’d just fall off.”

So really, there’s a Civil War playing out in his own brain, one that seemingly pits the genteel North versus the savage South. Only, much like we learn in conclusion of the “Some Nights” video, sometimes those roles are actually reversed. (In the vid, we see a handsome, well-heeled Union soldier brutally stab a gentle-hearted Confederate man.) And that’s what makes the video so smart, really … thanks to director Anthony Mandler, they’ve created a combat clip that’s as visually arresting as it is deep. There are wars being waged inside each of us, no matter how hard we try to avoid them. And there are always going to be casualties. After all, emotional conflicts are usually just as bloody as the actual thing.

Jaw-dropping, heart-pounding, gut-busting moments galore. See what went down at the 21st annual MTV Movie Awards!