Fifteen years ago, Sean Penn won an Oscar that rightfully belonged to Bill Murray for his work in Sofia Coppola’s Lost in Translation, but history has it’s own way of righting such wrongs. We can assure you that you will never read the headline, “Hey, Remember That Movie Mystic River? Shawn Mendes Just Made a Music Video Inspired by It for Reasons That Don’t Immediately Seem Clear.” No, it’s Murray and Lost in Translation that have become iconic in pop culture, and Shawn Mendes did just make a music video inspired by the film—for reasons that do seem very clear.
Because when you make a song with Zedd entitled “Lost in Japan,” then you do have little choice but to go ahead and draw inspiration from Lost in Translation for the video. In his adaptation, Mendes, of course, takes on Murray’s role as the American celebrity in town to shoot a whiskey ad, while 13 Reasons Why’s Alisha Boe plays Scarlett Johansson’s role as his love interest. (If you’re not familiar with Boe, find out all about her here.) The music video is a pretty faithful homage to the original, basically re-creating some of the 2003 film’s most memorable moments note for note.
There’s the awkward whiskey commercial shoot. (Don’t worry, Mendes, 20, is now old enough to legally drink in both his native Canada and Japan. We checked.)
The elevator scene:
And, of course, the karaoke party scene:
There are, however, a few small differences. Bill Murray’s shower scene is played for laughs:
And Shawn Mendes’s version is, um, decidedly not:
Also, astoundingly, the video does not end with Mendes and Boa whispering sweet nothings into each other’s ears.
Oh, well, it’s still a solid homage, and, frankly, we’re just glad he didn’t try to make a Garden State music video or something. Indeed, along with Troye Sivan and Ariana Grande’s recent tribute to the Knife, we wonder how much longer these Gen Z pop stars will continue to comb cultural touchstones of 30-something hipsters. It’s only a matter of time until Halsey attempts a Mulholland Drive homage, but until then, watch Mendes’s latest effort in full: