Talib Kweli recently dropped his album, Gutter Rainbows. The video for its first single, “Cold Rain,” is inspired by Denzel Washington’s Book Of Eli and had us reminiscing over some videos based on movies. Take a look at our list for the top ten music videos inspired by films.
Joe Budden’s first single dropped in the summer of 2003. The
subsequent video for the Just Blazed produced track featured elements
of the Naomi Watts horror flick, The Ring. Instead of a deranged
twelve year old girl climbing through our television sets, it was the
light skinned rapper from Jersey. Can we also pinpoint this clip as
the inception of Joey’s love for video chicks?
9. Ludacris – How Low
Chris Bridges is known for taking established concepts and turning
them on their ear. He and director, Dave Meyers use the basis of
Candyman as inspiration for the clip. Women no longer needed to
whisper Candyman’s name three times in front of a mirror for his guest
appearance. Drop it low enough and Luda would show up and watch her
bend over to the front and touch her toes.
Erykah Badu established herself a visual artist with her premiere
video. “On & On” is a Cinderella story set against The Color Purple
backdrop. We find Ms. Badu folding laundry, chasing after dogs, and
struggling to get a comb through a little girl’s tough hair. The best
part is when Erykah finally gets her Shug Avery on and the woman
snaps,” I know that ain’t my table cloth she got on!”
Hov drew a line in the sand with “D.O.A.” He wanted artists to get
more creative in their music making. However, video director, Anthony
Mandler, lifted the concept from the ’70s Italian film, Zabriskie
Point. The stark contrast between the dark lighting of the background
juxtaposed with the garish look of exploding objects pays homage to
Michelangelo Antonioni’s vision. Sidenote: Thank heavens Jigga had the
clippers grace his scalp in the clip. He had dudes walking around
looking wreckless following behind him.
6. Ashanti – Foolish
For Ashanti’s first solo outing, she wrote a song many women could
relate to. Nothing drove the message of being foolish for staying with
a partner who mistreats you home more so than the Irv Gotti helmed
flick. Gotti’s affinity for mob movies is further proven as he places
Ashanti and Terrance Howard in the role of Henry and Karen Hill from
Goodfellas. Howard gallivants with jump offs without regard,
while Ashanti is the dutiful wife at home, stuck.
5. D-12 – Fight Music
“Fight Music” is a rambunctious anthem to get listeners hyped. The
video matched the spirit of the record. Based on the ’70s classic, The
Warriors, the video features a mob of men carrying different kinds of
weapons with the intent to harm the dirty dozen. The group call on
their allies and the video ends with an intense face off. Can you dig
4. Redman – Whateva Man
Redman and his partner in crime, Method Man parody The Blues Brothers
in the visual for “Whateva Man.” We follow a day in the life of these
two cool guys after one is released from the state pen. Think of this
as the precursor to their weed comedy, How High.
Bussa Bus has made of the most incredible videos this side of the
’90s.One of his best is the joint for the 1997 hit, “Put Your Hands
Where My Eyes Can See.” Directed by Hype Williams, the clip was a
spoof of Eddie Murphy’s classic, Coming To America, with Trevor Smith
playing Prince Akeem. Despite the the eye popping graphics and
visuals,fans commented immensely about the high energy African
choreography by Fatima Robinson performed at half speed. Pure genius.
2. Nas- Street Dreams
Based on Casino, Nas parallels life on ghetto blocks with the plot of
the Scorsese drama. This is Hype Williams during his pinnacle. A video that
features ostentatious colors and the stacking effect is classic Hype.
The cinematic style only added to its mystique. But no matter how good
the video is, everyone will constantly refer to it as the one where Nas wore a pastel pink suit.
1. 2Pac & Dr. Dre – California Love
In 1995, 2Pac had just gotten out of prison and was itching to record.
When he heard the Dre production, he knew this was going to be a huge
smash. While Pac was right, the video is sits right alongside it in
the pantheon of hip hop greatness. Add it up, a young Chris Tucker and
Tony Cox acting a fool and Roger Troutman’s cameo set in a
futuristic Mad Max Beyond The Thunderdome world and you have a recipe
for success. No matter how hard anyone tries, this video remains king.