Give credit to Kanye West for his brilliant performance on Saturday Night Live when he performed in front of a white, back-lit sheet as ballerinas and dancers contorted around him. The performance which had many people talking was the epic precursor to Runaway, his half-hour music video/short film. Unfortunately the music video didn’t live up to the promise from his SNL performance.
The 35-minute-long film, tells the tale of a fallen phoenix (played by Victoria’s Secret Angel Selita Ebanks) who is transported to earth by a meteor. The video aired on MTV and BET and was streamed on each channel’s respective website. As well as VH1.com. The shorter version, 8-minutes-long offered more of the same from Saturday Night Live October 2, 2010 when he was the musical guest.
West continues on the symbolic nature of phoenixes saying : “I’ve been feeling the idea of the phoenix. It’s been in my heart for a while. It’s maybe parallel to my career. I threw a Molotov cocktail on my career last year, in a way, and I had to come back as a better person.”
Some people have been calling it overindulgent and self-absorbed and Kanye a narcissist while others believe that hidden in the oddities that lie within the 35-minute long video, might be a statement about Kanye that his fans will find fascinating. While the music video (directed by Kanye himself) is visually a departure from Wests’ other past video projects, it is also a complete disaster and not only has me agreeing with his detractors but has me missing Michael Jackson even more.
An almost unmitigated disaster, this major studio production with a major artist in the lead is a badly directed, horribly scripted, dismal mess of a film that is every bit as bad as you’ve heard.