Let’s start by mentioning that I could not stand, for the life of me, this dry song. I call it dry, because compared to most songs in Top 100, The Box has the musical complexity of a tumbleweed in the desert. So just by listening to it, The Box never touched me, never made a connection with my ears. However, it managed to make a connection with my eyes, who then transmitted to my ears that the song ain’t that bad, which in turn told the brain ”hey, this is actually pretty good”, for the ultimate decision to be turned into ”I like this song!”.
If you read the previous article about Lady Gaga’s music video Stupid Love, you know I had a big issue with it. Main reason: boring. And Roddy Ricch’s The Box is the complete antithesis of Stupid Love, this being the absolute first time I’m hearing/seeing this artist.
The music video starts with someone spray-painting the Start line of the race. Then the camera goes to show Roddy Ricch in a gorgeous Dodge Challenger SRT 392, while his racing competitor boasts a superb Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.
I don’t know what camera they used to shoot this video but… WOW! Set the quality to 1080p and it feels like watching a movie. And they damn sure know how to increase the feeling of anticipation. You get glued to the screen and CAN NOT let go because you badly want to see what is next. Also, worthy mentioning, they did an amazing job focusing on the artist’s face, something that has always been less and less of a priority since 2010. Roddy Ricch went back to music video basics 101: show the face of the artist as much and as clear as possible. People need to remember your face before they pay attention to anything else. Go back and see some of Jay Z’s or Beyonce’s music videos. 60% of the shots were face close-ups. I don’t know why the industry shifted away from this, but it’s WASTEFUL. Wasteful because if you got money to pump in a dope visual, make sure the viewers will know by the end of it, who you are.
The aerial shots of the race are freakin’ mind blowing! That’s what modern art should look like: unexpected beautiful shots and angles of a moving object. I don’t think anyone would pay attention to a static Mustang these days for example. We’re living in an era where we’re fighting for TIME. Our attention has adapted so well to the BS the media was trying to shove down our throats, that our brains decide instantly if something is worth our time or not. And this music video is worth every second of watching it!
After an unforeseen accident takes place with the 2nd racecar driver, we’re catapulted into a basketball game where Roddy Ricch is about to score. I love how they slow-mo’ed the audience’s reaction btw. Very artsy. A very well put-together alternation between slow motion and normal paced shots.
And up he goes, always closer to the basket itself. We get again very nice-done face closeups. Roddy, I don’t know who’s your camera guy, but he deserves a cookie. He did an amazing job capturing your facial expressions and skin complexity. I know it’s a touchy subject, but often music video directors have trouble representing the actual skin color of black artists. They either go into desaturation mode to bring out the highlights, or do it all black and white so they don’t have to deal with the post-color grading process.
Then comes, in my opinion, THE BEST SHOT OF THE ENTIRE MUSIC VIDEO: Roddy Ricch hanging by one arm from the basket while looking into the camera. EPICNESS! Such an unexpected visual twist! Also it coincides so well with his lyrics: ”I done put my whole arm in the rim, Vince Carter/
And I know probably get a key for the quarter”.
Then we get yet another smooth transition from the basket to the floor when everyone comes down to celebrate the victory with Roddy Ricch: Cheerleaders, team players, regular people, the Victory Cup right beside him and many happy faces. It’s a PARTY!
Then we see Roddy Ricch trying to rob a bank, casually talking to the camera in the meantime. Face shots! All you major artists could learn a thing or two by studying this music video. Everything done right: from beginning til the end.
All of these things happened and we’re barely halfway through the song! WOW! Then we get a scene, that according to my belief, will be the top satisfying visual part for females watching this music video as it brings a pop of color to the whole story line: Roddy on a satin yellow bed matress with 3 huge cushions, floating on purple water and being surrounded by 3 swimming sharks on the surface, and a bunch of other sharks swimming at deeper levels in the background.
Then we casually get to see him climbing up the walls of a building while holding on to a rope AND while the whole inside is on fire. Where did you get these ideas from??? Oh and for those who aren’t in the loop, Roddy Ricch directed the whole music video. So this boy got TONS OF CREATIVITY!
Then Roddy appears at a table with other guys in what appears to be a trap house. We’re at the 6th scene by minute 2. That’s how you do it!!! In the age of Tik Tok dances and viral challenges of 5-6 seconds videos, you HAVE TO ENTERTAIN the audience. I’m very happy to see new artists bring their A game and representing a huge threat to the more established artists. Thank you Roddy! Maybe we’ll get better music videos from the legends too now that you’ve shown them how it’s done!
While in the trap house, Roddy Ricch is looking at his TV where we get transported to the next scene, that is concluding the racecar story, this time with Roddy Rich outside in a futuristic-like costume and a pair of sunglasses. And the cars from before, explode right behind him, and I don’t know if the explosion really happened or if it was all CGI, but damn they did a good job on making us question reality.
A somewhat expected scene, according to the lyrics of the song ”I’m a 2020 president candidate/ I done put a hunnid bands on Zimmerman shit”, is seeing Roddy Ricch in his political-like persona, behind a lectern (speaking stand).
After he takes a leather bag filled with money, from the mud, while it’s raining, we see a SWAT team busting inside his office, in what appears to be, him as a president from the previous scene but covered in blood this time.
Now we’re at a warehouse with lots of women in lingerie putting boxes together. For some reason I thought instantly of Amazon. Funny how Amazon created this strong association of warehouse and boxes with their brand that now when you see one, it’s them who you think about.
And on to the final scene: Roddy Ricch in a glass box in a museum. Sheesh! I’ve counted 11 different scenes including the museum. The A listers are falling behind pretty hard with young artists like this who raise the bars to this level. And I like the song now. Never got it before the music video, now I’m learning the lyrics to it. So DO NOT EVER UNDERESTIMATE THE POWER OF A MUSIC VIDEO. It can turn a non believer into a believer. Until the next article,