Reel To Reel returns, with a short-film from a superstar, aggressive content from another, and old friends tearing up paperwork, unexpectedly.

The Good:

“We Were Once A Fairytale” by Kanye West

Much like Forest Gump‘s feelings about ‘stupid,’ art is as art does. Kanye West loves polarizing art, clear from his abilities to make socially aware anthems like “All Falls Down” and then go and make a big breasted fan tribute of “Throw Some D’s” [click to view]. “We Were Once A Fairtytale,” an afterward to “See You In My Nightmares,” is directed by Where The Wild Things Are director Spike Jonze. Before making blockbusters in Hollywood, Jonze cut his teeth making videos for Beastie Boys, Pharcyde [click to read] and “Flashing Lights” last year. At just over 11 minutes, this self-mocking video is beautiful to some, angering to others, and confusing to most. In any event, whether he paid to make this video, whether it was trade for appearing on Jonze’s brother album, The Spirit Of Apollo [click to read], or it was just two geniuses having fun, Hip Hop benefits from taking itself a bit more seriously, and then again, not at all.

The Bad:

“Clear” by Kardinal Offishall

For the last decade, Kardinal [click to read] has been blessed with the ability to make Rap, Reggae, Dancehall and other music in a neatly packaged hybrid. After trying to go club with “Clear,” Kardy has offishally lost his mind. While his buddy Akon [click to read] has been deeply influenced by European club music, Kardinal needs to sit this one out. The video doubles as a tour diary on speed, while Kardinall’s dancing for the camera channels something akin to Hammer, but not entirely different than A.J. Johnson‘s Eazy E impersonation in the “F With Dre Day” videos. This song could sound great in the club — probably on the New Jersey shore, but the video to go along with it, could give a sober man a hangover.

The Ugly:

“Crime Wave” by 50 CentWe understand that artisically, 50 Cent [click to read] sometimes goes for ugly, especially in times of pushing “aggressive content.” “Crime Wave” certainly isn’t one of the Mister Softee tracks that held back Curtis [click to read]. However, if 50 Cent had bookmarked his year by bodying Rick Ross‘ [click to read] 2009 for nearly all of the Miami rapper’s questionable moves, making low-budget, poorly acted videos wasn’t one. Where 50 Cent wins with this is shooting the flick in New York, using his real cars, and the excessive violence. The acting, the scripting of the video, and the handicam aesthetic make us wonder though, when Fif will blow the bank on a proper Before I Self Destruct video look, and if that will be as “aggressive.”

The Unexpected:

Ma$e Makes Diddy Release Him From His Contract

Mase Makes Puff Release Him In The Middle of V103’s Ryan Cameron Show from shudduptv on Vimeo.

When Puff goes to radio, shit goes down. There was that 2005 HOT97 incident that watched The L.O.X. [click to read] get thier publishing back, publicly. Another 1990s Bad Boy Records star, Ma$e, ganged up his once-and-again boss with the help of the Ryan Cameron Show and Atlanta radio station V103 [click to read]. In the last decade, both G-Unit and SRC Records were unable to liberate Ma$e from his Bad Boy paperwork, so Ma$e snuck attack Diddy, who acted both apathetic, but deeply bothered. The greater question will be what comes of the “Bad, Bad, Bad, Boys” relationship after this, and if Bad Boy will ever advertise on V103 again. So now that Ma$e is a free agent, let the bidding war begin. *Crickets* Anybody? Anybody? Bueller? Koch?

The Late Pass:

“Make My Day” by Common featuring Cee-LoTo quote the film Zoolander, “Sting would be another person who’s a hero. The music that he’s created over the years – I don’t really listen to it. But the fact that he’s making it, I respect that.” I feel the same way about Common [click to read]. Universal Mind Control [click to read] slid out last December, and after poor critical and commercial performance, it’s shocking that he’d make another video for “Make My Day.” Cool coloration and flip-book animation make a nice visual to one of the least evils of the album. Cee-Lo [click to read] does not appear, but the video is a nicer way of the Chicago veteran to ask his female fans, “come on, get on this conscious dick.” It’s been a strange year for Comm, and it’s only getting stranger.