It's becoming a genre all its own: the "stuck in an airport with too much time" video, which is ascending to new heights due to the work of a Georgia-based traveler in Las Vegas who took advantage of travel voucher offers, an iPhone, a Celine Dion cover of Eric Carmen's "All By Myself" and an empty airport to craft a funny clip.
After procuring vouchers on two consecutive overbooked flights, Richard Dunn found himself with 15 hours to spare and a flash of inspiration: "Let's see what kind of trouble I can get in," as he told the Canadian Broadcasting Corp.
Unlike most lonely journeymen, though, Dunn didn't head for the airport saloon or the slot machines. Rather, he decided to make a music video for "All By Myself," the soft-rock weeper featuring a whining Dion waxing on the fear of being alone.
The result is five minutes of overwrought joy that opens with a question — "What do you do when you're stuck at the Las Vegas airport overnight?" — and then answers it through the use of well-framed shots of an emptying terminal, blank departure screens and the general sense of a man fully taking advantage of his alone time and the tools at his disposal.
Dunn explained the seed of the idea to the CBC: "I've got my phone and an empty movie set, so let's see what we can do."
He employs moving sidewalks to craft beautiful panning shots of himself sitting, isolated, among rows of empty chairs. "Nobody's home," sings Dion as the iPhone lingers on Dunn. Sitting on the floor at the entrance to the women's bathroom, he lip-syncs the words: "All by myself/Don't wanna be all by myself anymore." He sings alongside a poster for the Blue Man Group, serenades the image of a sexy woman wearing diamonds, employs a wheelchair to construct beautiful tracking shots. Sitting next to a sign that reads "Need Help?," Dunn stares at the ceiling looking like an abandoned child.
He loses it near the end. As Dion moves to a crescendo, Dunn sings her lines, wobbling, sobbing, screaming. He's so lost and alone that he sings to a stone turtle near the baggage claim. He even gives a nod to the "Flashdance" dance scene.
"There were a couple people around," said Dunn of his shoot, adding that this being Vegas, workers had seen much worse. "They ignored me, I ignored them, all was good."
The final shot shows Our Hero curled in a fetal position, rocking and lost, on the floor near a women's bathroom. If you don't reach for a tissue at this point, you need a new heart.
Watch the video here.
Looking for music tips? Follow Randall Roberts on Twitter: @lileditCopyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times