Run the Jewels have unveiled a direct, politically powerful new video for ‘Close Your Eyes (And Count To Fuck)’, a standout from ‘RTJ2’ featuring Zack de la Rocha.
Directed by AG Rojas, the new video pits white cop (Shea Whigman from Boardwalk Empire) against black youth (Keith Stanfield from Selma) in a perennial struggle. No matter what the setting or context, regardless of how pointless the fight is, both Whigman and Stanfield can’t stop clashing heads.
“This video represents the futile and exhausting existence of a purgatory-like law enforcement system. There is no neat solution at the end because there is no neat solution in the real world. However, there is an opportunity for dialogue and to change the way communities are policed in this country,” says Killer Mike.
“There is no neat solution at the end because there is no neat solution in the real world.”
— Killer Mike
Director AG Rojas had this to say:
“When Run The Jewels sent me this track, I knew we had the opportunity to create a film that means something. I felt a sense of responsibility to do just that. We had to exploit the lyrics and aggression and emotion of the track, and translate that into a film that would ignite a valuable and productive conversation about racially motivated violence in this country. It's provocative, and we all knew this, so we were tasked with making something that expressed the intensity of senseless violence without eclipsing our humanity. For me, it was important to write a story that didn’t paint a simplistic portrait of the characters of the Cop and Kid. They're not stereotypes. They're people - complex, real people and, as such, the power had to shift between them at certain points throughout the story. The film begins and it feels like they have been fighting for days, they’re exhausted, not a single punch is thrown, their violence is communicated through clumsy, raw emotion. They've already fought their way past their judgments and learned hatred toward one another. Our goal was to highlight the futility of the violence, not celebrate it.”
Run the Jewels play London Field Day (6th June) and London Forum (7th June), before taking on Reading & Leeds (28th-30th August).
Watch the new video below.