Kendrick Lamar Unveils Dark ‘God Is a Gangsta’ Short Film Featuring ‘u’ + ‘For Sale?’
Kendrick Lamar has debuted a seven-minute short film “God Is a Gangsta” comprising To Pimp a Butterfly’s “u” and “For Sale? (Interlude).” Check out the NSFW clip -- directed by Jack Begert and PANAMAERA -- above.
Divided into two parts, the video opens with “u” and captures Lamar on a drinking bender. Upon initial listens, it’s difficult to discern who Lamar is speaking to when he repeats, “Loving you is complicated” -- it could be family, heroes, a romantic partner, disappointing politicians, a higher deity. But when Lamar turns to face a mirror in “God Is a Gangsta,” the dizzying clip comes into plain focus. But just as quickly, Lamar's vocal delivery shifts to near-breaking point and he turns to the camera, making the audience complicit, too.
The video’s second act flashes between Lamar surrounded by women at David Lynch’s nightclub in Paris and images of the rapper receiving a makeshift baptism. Subliminal messages -- marketing and otherwise -- divide the two settings.
To Pimp a Butterfly arrived back in March and has since racked up a staggering seven Grammy nominations for Album of the Year, Song of the Year, Best Rap Performance, Best Rap/Sung Collaboration, Best Music Video, Best Rap Album and Best Rap Song. (And that doesn't even include nominations for Lamar's contributions to Taylor Swift’s “Bad Blood,” Kanye West’s “All Day” and Flying Lotus’ “Never Catch Me.”) The album is also our No. 2 record of 2015.