As a self-proclaimed expert on Christina Aguilera’s music videos, I have to admit: my memory is rather fuzzy when it comes to Aguilera's video for “Hurt,” aka, the heart-wrenching ballad from 2006's Back to Basics. As hard as I tried, I honestly couldn’t recall any of it — that is, until I was about 10 seconds into rewatching the video. Then, it all came flooding back: the circus theme, Aguilera’s stunning transformation into her second alter ego “Baby Jane,” and the fact that this video leaves viewers straight-up bawling like babies.
Just consider the chorus: "I'm sorry for/Blaming you/For all the things/I just couldn't do/And I’ve hurt myself by hurting you." As Back To The Future's Marty McFly would say, that's heavy, Doc. BRB, I just need a minute to collect myself.
Moving on, basically the only
thing that kept me from dissolving into a puddle of tears was the drama. It kept
me enthralled from start to finish, from the wind machine that blows Aguilera’s
blonde locks perfectly around her face, to the dramatic makeup, to the chest-clutching. I mean, it’s
practically a Broadway performance in a music video.
If you doubt my ability to assess an Aguilera video, allow me to walk you through this rewatch with 12 "Hurt" moments you might've forgotten:
The Vintage Circus Intro
Step right up, folks. What you are about to witness is a singer whose dramatic acting skills have been seriously underrated.
A Future Circus Star In The Making
Ah, so the story begins with a young Aguilera (and circus star hopeful) accompanied by her encouraging dad.
When Dad Gives Little Aguilera The Elephant Charm
This Moment When Dad Looks Too Sad For Words
Totally can't handle this moment. Moving on...
Aguilera's Totally Glamorous Gown
I'm not a huge fan of sequins or any material that resembles them, but she looks flawless here.
This Heartbreaking Scene Between Famous Christina And Her Dad
This moment totally kills any assumption about how awesome fame must be.
This Total Chest-Clutching Scene
Even though you can probably guess the bad news the telegram contains, it won't stop you from wincing in pain while watching this scene.
This Scene When Aguilera Nearly Can't Go On
She deserves an Oscar for the best execution of a dramatic collapse in a music video. Bravo, Xtina, bravo.
When She Regains Hope, If Only For a Moment
Did anyone else notice the slight rise in her brow or the light that flashed in her eyes when she caught sight of the silhouette that held so much promise? This is standing ovation-worthy acting, guys.
When She Finally Breaks Down And Cries
If you're crying a little bit right now, don't be sorry. Aguilera doesn't blame you, and neither do I.
The Subtle Makeup Streak Moment
By subtle I mean that the amount of streakiness isn't proportionate to the drama of the video. This moment could've been much more powerful had she copied Lauren Conrad's mascara tear-streaked face from that one The Hills episode.
This Scene Where She's Not Even Trying To Pull It Together
She's totally over it, y'all, as she should be.
Rewatch it and weep.
Images: CAguileraVEVO/YouTube (13)