Green Day Visits Boulevard of Broken Dreams

Green Day recently won the ‘video of the year’ award at the 2005 MTV Video Music Awards with ‘Boulevard of Broken Dreams’. In addition they were given awards for Best Rock Video, Viewers’ Choice Award, Best Group Video, Best Editing, Best Cinematography and Best Direction. Boulevard of Broken Dreams was the second single to be released from the seventh studio album, ‘American Idiot‘, released in 2005. The album follows the journey of Jesus of Suburbia and in this song tracks the loneliness he feels as he arrives in the city.

Green Day in Boulevard of Broken Dreams music video

The video begins with the band in a steaming broken-down car. Behind them is a stop sign. The car’s labeled as ‘Green Day’. As the three band members step out of the car the film becomes marked by scratches, dirt and grease, giving it a feel of an old damaged movie. Tumbleweed blows past and the steam from the car blows to the right. We get a closeup of the grenade-clutching hand on the bonnet of the car.

As the lyrics start the band members walk through a ghost town in the middle of a desert. A vulture sitting by a mail box turns to watch them pass. The camera now cuts to the band performing in an abandoned building. “Ah ah”.

The second verse finds the band walking through the city, passing pedestrians, traffic signs. A Chinese video shop has a poster for “Red Trousers”, a documentary on Hong Kong stuntmen. Another shop features an American flag in the front window. The camera takes us past pedestrians warming themselves by a bin fire. They walk past a Spanish shop and into the night lights of the city. Finally we cut back to the band members in the desert again.

Click on the image below to play the Boulevard of Broken Dreams video in YouTube

Boulevard of Broken Dreams in Popular Culture

The title of the video is shared with the Gottfried Helnwein painting, Boulevard of Broken Dreams in which Elvis serves behind the counter while Humphrey Bogart, Marilyn Munroe and James Dean wait at the counter. This painting in turn is a parody of Edward Hopper’s 1942 painting Nighthawks.

Boulevard of Broken Dreams by Gottfried Helnwein

Helnwein’s painting shares its name with the song written for the 1934 comedy film Moulin Rouge by Al Dubin (English lyrics) VF Romano (Spanish lyrics) and Harry Warren (music). The song was originally performed by Constance Bennett and Studio Chorus.

Brassknuckle Boys, a punk group from Lexington KY, have a track, “Boulevard of Broken Dreams”, on their May 2005 album, American Bastard.

Paul Alexander’s biography of James Dean was also called ‘Boulevard of Broken Dreams‘.

Production Credits

Green Day is an Californian punk group comprising Billie Joe Armstrong – lead vocals and guitar, Mike Dirnt – bass and backing vocals, and Tré Cool – drums, backing vocals.

The director and cinematographer for ‘Boulevard of Broken Dreams’ was Samuel Bayer via Black Dog Films, the music video arm of RSA Films, with producer Tim Lynch and Tim Royes. Bayer is now represented by HSI, London.

Visual effects were produced at Method Studios by Alex Frisch, Cedric Nicolas, Neysa Horsburgh, Rich Rama, Sue Troyan, with executive producer Tracie Norfleet.

Telecine (transferring motion picture film to video) was carried out at The Syndicate.

Download the music video from iTunes:

Boulevard of Broken Dreams

Boulevard of Broken Dream Lyrics

I walk a lonely road
The only one that I have ever known
Don’t know where it goes
But it’s home to me and I walk alone
I walk this empty street
On the Boulevard of Broken Dreams
Where the city sleeps
and I’m the only one and I walk alone

I walk alone
I walk alone
I walk alone
I walk a…

My shadow’s the only one that walks beside me
My shallow heart’s the only thing that’s beating
Sometimes I wish someone out there will find me
‘Til then I walk alone

Billie Joe Armstrong in Boulevard of Broken Dreams music video

Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Aaah-ah,
Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Ah-ah

I’m walking down the line
That divides me somewhere in my mind
On the border line
Of the edge and where I walk alone
Read between the lines
What’s f**ked up and everything’s alright
Check my vital signs
To know I’m still alive and I walk alone

Green Day in Boulevard of Broken Dreams music video

I walk alone
I walk alone
I walk alone
I walk a…

My shadow’s the only one that walks beside me
My shallow heart’s the only thing that’s beating
Sometimes I wish someone out there will find me
‘Til then I walk alone

Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Aaah-ah
Ah-ah, Ah-ah

I walk alone
I walk a…

I walk this empty street
On the Boulevard of Broken Dreams
Where the city sleeps
And I’m the only one and I walk a…

My shadow’s the only one that walks beside me
My shallow heart’s the only thing that’s beating
Sometimes I wish someone out there will find me
‘Til then I walk alone…

Moulin Rouge Boulevard of Broken Dreams

The song has been covered by Nat King Cole Trio and Diana Krall.

Download the Boulevard of Broken Dreams – The Nat King Cole Trio – The Complete Capitol Transcription Sessions at iTunes

Verse 1:
Nightly, lights are shining brightly,
Feet are tripping lightly
While the music plays.
Madness, in the guise of gladness,
Overcoming sadness
In a million ways;
Oh, Gay Paree (Paris), look what you’ve done to me.

I walk along the street of sorrow,
The Boulevard of Broken Dreams;
Where gigolo and gigolette
Can take a kiss without regret,
So they forget their broken dreams.
You laugh tonight and cry tomorrow,
When you behold your shattered schemes,
And gigolo and gigolette
Wake up to find their eyes are wet
With tears that tell of broken dreams.
Here is where you’ll always find me,
Always walking up and down;
But I left my soul behind me
In an old cathedral town.
The joy that you find here you borrow
You cannot keep it long it seems,
But gigolo and gigolette
Still sing a song and dance along
The Boulevard of Broken Dreams.

Verse 2 (from British sheet music):
Smiling while my woes are piling,
I must be beguiling
Or they’ll pass me by.
Laughter, that is what they’re after
But behind my laughter,
There’s a tear-dimmed eye;
Oh, Gay Paris, you’ve made a wreck of me.


Spanish lyric:
El Boulevard De La Desilusión (Gigoló y Gigolette)

Noche clara, luz alegre,
Noche preferida para caminar;
En tus luces ha nacido,
La tristeza honda
De la realidad.
Escucha la canción del bulevar.

He caminado por la calle,
Por esa calle que_una vez;
Estremecidos de placer,
Vió que se iban a besar
A Gigoló y_a Gigolette.
Bulevar de los sueños rotos,
Calle de la desilusión;
Donde por la primera vez,
Se vió llorar con emoción,
A Gigoló y_a Gigolette.
Esa fué la vez primera
Que_empañaron su querer;
En la noche luminosa,
Gigoló y Gigolette.
La recorrí de_arriba_abajo,
Calle de la desilusión,
Y vi mis lágrimas caer,
Al evocar el muerto_amor
De Gigoló y Gigolette.

  • thamires vilasboa

    eh vx mesmo billi..
    vou morrer de feliscidade
    bjkss na bocaa amo tu.

  • nice song i really loved it

  • Huda Swithun

    they say where to young, to get are self’s sprun. Huda Swithun.

  • polah.armstrong

    me encanta green day!
    es lo mejor que hay en este mundo de mentiras y manipulaciones, hace ver todo de la verdaera forma que es!!
    sonlo mejor, los amo, daria todo por ellos!!
    gracias por todo!!
    green family!!

  • monica

    me fascina este grupo lo adoro sobre todo a billy joe que hoy es su cumple lo amo!!!

  • claire

    …only green day are my life.. they are my heart… trè mike and billie vi amoooo

  • kasandra

    estan buenas las fotos y el video no querida ese es mi novio bonbola pendeja anasiqui anda a bañarte

  • bianay cano

    i luv green day and billie joe armstrong the most…..i love their pictures and music they are my favorite band and i wish i can meet them!!!!!!!!

  • punkie*


  • anna

    porque as pessoas são tão descultas? “aiii, billy, amuu tux ,! oihsuahsiohad” ¬¬ poha gente, É O GREEN DAY, não ‘bily’. mas eu também gosto dele. rs. porém eu gosto de todos igual, beijos. foram eles que me ensinaram o que é música pra mim. hoje eu só ouço meu tipo, ok? o que ninguém conhece (além de beatles e green day). há! 😉