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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.

10. Joe Budden – Pump It Up

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.

8. Erykah Badu – On & On

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!”

7. Jay-Z – D.O.A.

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.

3. Busta Rhymes – Put Your Hands Where My Eyes Can See

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.


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