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No Church In The Wild
Romain Gavras has been on a roll in the past year. From directing the launching commercial for Adidas’ All In campaign, to M.I.A.’s critically-acclaimed Bad Girls music video, the French director has tackled different styles, while always keeping the Gavras spirit alive in each and everyone of his pieces.
On their side, Jay-Z and Kanye West have made their part in releasing music videos from their collaborative album Watch The Throne that step out of the money/booze/hoes recipe in 99% of today’s hip-hop videos.
Now, the two hip-hop juggernauts have teamed up with Gavras to release the video for what I think is the best song on their album, opener No Church In The Wild. Hell, I even watched the movie Safehouse just because that song played in the trailer.
Gavras went for a look and feel that ressembles what he previously produced for M.I.A.’s Born Free, where police officers captured red-haired people in a semi-post-apocalyptic world. No Church In The Wild is 5 minutes of riots, shot in Prague, Czech Republic, where rebels clash with the police force in high intensity fights, all portrayed in beautiful slow-motion, which creates a nice clash between the violent images, but smooth rhythm of the song. For most likely the first time in both their careers (I might be wrong), neither Jay-Z or Kanye appear in their own video (that is if you don’t count Way Too Cold released last month, but the video presents a kid-version of Kanye, so…). There is no performance whatsoever in this video, which makes it even more unique. To be honest, I’m not sure this video will make history, but it is still truly refreshing to see a concept like this for a hip-hop song. Honestly, probably no one other the Kanye/Jay/Romain team could pull this off and render a hip-hop video with imagery like that.
Mr. Gavras, once again, you met expectations.