Saturday, 5 June 2010


The 'controversial' (Removed from youtube, widespread banter and fuss and media coverage) video for M.I.A's new single 'Born Free' was shot by french director Romain Gavras (He also shot Justice's 'Stress', another seemingly controversial film, Simian Mobile Disco's 'I Believe', DJ Mehdi's 'Signatune' and The Last Shadow Puppets 'The Age of The Understatement'). The film depicts an armed force wearing flags on their shoulders, running through a building in an urban zone and beating a couple making love, passing by a man smoking, and a red-haired young man being violently forced into a detainee transport vehicle along with other red-haired men that have been rounded up, and has been described widely as a metaphoric political statement. The men are shown being driven out to the desert, treated brutally, and forced to run across a live minefield. During the course of events a young man is shown shot through the head and another is shown blown to pieces after stepping on a live mine. During the video a mural is seen with armed red haired men and the slogan "Our day will come", which is the historic slogan of the Irish Republican Army, Tiocfaidh ár lá. Also depicted are keffiya-wearing red-haired children who throw rocks and glass bottles at the armored vehicles transporting the detainees, an apparent reference to a larger resistance.
The 12 year-old child actor, Ian Hamrick, whose character is shot in the head, described the video as, "highlighting violence in order to end violence."

MTV has described it as "unflinchingly, unapologetically real" depicting "the kind of things that most nations — including the U.S., which is portrayed as the aggressor in the clip — often pretend don't happen: the rounding-up of ethnic minorities, the trampling of personal liberties, the bullying of the powerless by those with authority."
Eric Henderson (An American football player?) in Slant Magazine stated "what stuck with me is the furious dignity it accords the main tracksuit-wearing prisoner, and the amount of anger it allows him to deliver....I recognized within him and the band of rock-throwing dissidents that pelt the armored bus a sense of kinship relevant to anyone who occupies a minority class." While he felt that "the clip is but a metaphor, and not entirely successfully so, when the pitbull-faced, tenement-snatched redhead boy is slammed against an iron fence and still dares to glare into the eyes of his attackers, I want to be right there by his side fucking their shit up."

Well thats the in-depth look at the video! but what about the song?
It was produced by Diplo and Switch and samples "Ghost Rider", a 1977 song by the synthpunk band Suicide. The single artwork depicts a still from a video that allegedly shows the extra-judicial killing of Tamil Tiger fighters in 2009, underlined by an image of YouTube's customized error message. Slant stated that "word is that most of the record won't explore this kind of sound. Even so, it's a hell of a one-off, and it should pique expectations for the new record simply by proving that M.I.A.'s bag of studio tricks is as inexhaustible as her attitude."

Born Free - M.I.A ♥♥♥♥♥ [links removed]

Born Free (High Contrast Remix) - M.I.A

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