Selena Gomez’s Best Music Videos

After years of irrelevance, the music video suddenly became a prominent art form again in the late 2000s. That revival had more to do with Lady Gaga and Katy Perry than anyone else, but Selena Gomez adeptly rode that wave. Since she stopped working for Disney, Gomez has developed her own style, creating music videos with striking images. From high fashion dips in the pool to art film-inspired romps, let’s look at the essential Selena videos.

Selena Gomez arriving at the Gala Dinner | Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

‘Wolves’

Many of the greatest music videos ever made are special effects driven extravaganzas. The video for the Selena Gomez / Marshmello collaboration “Wolves” is actually fairly simple. We see Selena in a succession of glamorous outfits alone in what appears to be a YMCA. We never get any explanation as to why she is there or why she’s dressed that way.

Selena Gomez during the 72nd annual Cannes Film Festival | Photo by Tony Barson/FilmMagic

Near the end of the video, she gets on a diving board while still wearing a dress. Just when you expect to see Selena in the pool, the video cuts to her walking on water while dressed like she’s on the Oscars red carpet. What does this all mean? What is the purpose behind the video’s obvious religious symbolism? No one knows, and that’s the beauty of “Wolves.”

‘Back to You’

Selena Gomez has had an ongoing love affair with art films. As an actress, she has worked with acclaimed directors like Jim Jarmusch, Harmony Korine, and Woody Allen. Outside of her film work, her love of art films becomes apparent when you watch the clip for “Back to You.” The song combines EDM with country elements, which led many of Selena’s fans to expect the song’s video to have a country theme.

Selena Gomez in Westwood, California | Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

The singer threw the world a curveball when the video recreated many of the iconic scenes from the French New Wave film, Pierrot le Fou. The video managed to encapsulate the humor and color of its source material, and hopefully inspired some millennials to check out a classic movie. 

‘It Ain’t Me’

Music videos are generally exercises in self-promotion. For her song “It Ain’t Me,” Selena broke the mold by declining to appear in a music video for one of her songs. Another artist might not have been able to pull this off, but the video for “It Ain’t Me” works partially because it doesn’t have any famous faces in it.

Selena Gomez speaks onstage during The Hollywood Reporter’s Empowerment In Entertainment Event 2019 | Photo by Jesse Grant/Getty Images for THR

The song is a surprisingly serious and poignant depiction of a relationship falling apart due to alcoholism. The video manages to capture the emotions of the song. If Selena played the girlfriend in the video, some viewers probably would have just seen Selena, not her character. Letting another actress play the role helps the audience to suspend their disbelief.

While this video isn’t as strange as other Selena videos, it does stand out due to its expressive use of lighting. The director’s decision to shoot each individual scene with either yellow, blue, red, or green light recalls the similarly distinct cinematography of the Oscar-winning film, The Theory of Everything. Hopefully, the creative minds behind this compelling video will get the chance to make feature films.