I take back what I said about MIA's video in relation to it being an extension of MIA. I think to assign her a heavy co-signer position, to see this as her thesis is a mistake. As much as it is a product married to her work, it's totally in line with the directors aesthetic of randomized, inflammatory violence in a faux-doc style. This time he just had a bigger budget. You may remember him from the full length Justice documentary I had to review last year, or this shorter Justice video which could maybe be about immigrant tensions/violence in the public housing of Parisian suburbs, if it enunciated that at all (depends on whether you see hooliganism as justified, I s'pose)--or more importantly, if we thought of Justice as "political" artists. MIA ramps up the rhetoric whenever she's about to drop a new album, I think this fits with that rather than either Gavras or MIA making a statement about whiteness or privilege or genocide, it's gratitous for it's own sake, which makes it no different than the shock n' awe power beatdown/American media culture they seek to criticize.
Posted by jessica hopper at April 27, 2010 12:53 PM