Music videos (if they’re good) usually reflect the social climate of their time in an artistic way. In 2017 we noticed a common theme running through some of our favorite videos of the year: escapism. Whether it be through fantasy, or, on the other side of the coin, escaping back to something familiar, there was certainly a lot of wanting to be somewhere “other” in many of our favorite videos. But you be the judge. Here are our picks for the best videos of 2017.
Mike Will Made-It - “Perfect Pint”
Renowned photographer and music video director Nabil Elderkin directed the video for Mike Will Made-It's “Perfect Pint,” which also features Kendrick Lamar, Gucci Mane and Rae Sremmurd. The trippy video seems to be an homage to Terry Gilliam’s 1998 film “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas” based on the novel by Hunter S. Thompson, talk about escapism. Check it out above.
Young Thug - “Wyclef Jean”
This clever video is a classic example of the old adage “when life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” While shooting the video, co-director Ryan Staake ran into a number of problems including a few with the video’s star. Instead of throwing up his hands, Staake turned the turmoil on set into the focal point of the video in a bit of self-reflexive genius. Watch the video above to see what we mean.
ODESZA ft. Leon Bridges - “Across The Room”
An example of escaping back to the familiar, the visual for ODESZA's collaboration with soul man Leon Bridges is not only a feel good video but also has some great use of light, shadow and color from director Ian Schwartz. If you need a little pick me up this video will definitely brighten your day.
Kendrick Lamar - “Humble”
The escapism in Kendrick Lamar’s “Humble” is an escapism from yourself, or rather, your self centeredness. The video echoes this sentiment by showing things that aren’t necessarily “humble” while at the same time shedding light on what these things truly are. The video was directed by longtime K Dot collaborators Dave Meyers & the little homies.
Father John Misty “Total Entertainment Forever”
Father John Misty's social commentary on the dangers of blurring the lines of reality and escaping too deeply into entertainment had to have an over the top video and Josh Tillman certainly achieved that with director Adam Green and star Macaulay Culkin as Kurt Cobain. The video also stars Misty, George Washington and Jon Arbuckle of Garfield fame. But perhaps the greatest thing about the visual is that it is supposed to be a high-tech virtual reality experience and yet the video is delightfully--and intentionally--low budget. It’s kind of difficult to describe in words though, check it out above.