And the greatest video goes to... Johnny Cash

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The Independent Culture

A poignant film showing a visibly ailing Johnny Cash performing in his home just six months before he died has been named the greatest music video of all time.

In the moodily lit promo for the song Hurt, the frail music legend - distant and grey haired but still wearing his trademark black outfit - is playing guitar and piano, intercut with archive images from his prime, to give a retrospective of his life.

It was chosen by writers of Q magazine, beating effects-packed films for Fatboy Slim and Michael Jackson.

Cash died last year, aged 71, from complications linked to diabetes.

Director Mark Romanek wanted to capture the fragile state of Cash in the video. It also features his wife June Carter Cash. Romanek - who was behind the multi-million pound Scream video for Michael and Janet Jackson - also used Christian imagery and shots of the decaying House Of Cash Museum.

"Johnny's music has always been candid. I didn't want to make a phoney video - I wanted to tell the truth," said the director.

The video for Hurt - a cover of a song by industrial act Nine Inch Nails - brought Cash to the MTV generation. The video was nominated in six categories at the MTV Video Music Awards in 2003, although it won only the best cinematography title.

Fatboy Slim's Weapon Of Choice is runner-up. It was made by Being John Malkovich director Spike Jonze, who also created the Beastie Boys' Sabotage video at number five.

Michael Jackson's lavish 14-minute Thriller video, comes in third place.

Q's top 10 videos: Hurt - Johnny Cash (2003); Weapon Of Choice - Fatboy Slim (2001); Thriller - Michael Jackson (1983); Gay Bar - Electric Six (2003); Sabotage - Beastie Boys (1994); Coffee + TV - Blur (1999); November Rain - Guns N' Roses (1992); Nothing Compares 2 U - Sinead O'Connor (1990); Smells Like Teen Spirit - Nirvana (1991); The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly) - Missy Elliott (1997).

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