OK, so it's no secret that Taylor Swift knocks it out of the ballpark every time she makes a music video. Over the years, her songs and music videos have seemed to touch the hearts of teenage girls every where and share the tragic and wonderful mysteries of love.
TSwift's newest music video, "Wildest Dreams," is yet another show stopper that has caught the attention of the media from all angles.
When I first watched this video, I got the excited, jittery feeling I always do before watching a new Swift creation. Her videos are unlike many of the ones that can be seen in Hollywood today. Her stories and songs are, for the most part, innocent and classy and deal with the trials and successes of different love stories.
Watching the video, I saw exactly what was on the surface: Taylor Swift has a wonderful time prancing through the wilderness of Africa while co-starring with Scott Eastwood in what seems to be some romantic adventure movie. (One I wish was actually real.)
It wasn't until I sat down to write about the video when I noticed how negatively the media is receiving this new idea.
Yes, every piece of art is going to get some criticism. Not everyone has to love everything. So naturally there were some points of conversation.
It wasn't the fact that this video had some haters that bothered me, it was what they were hating on.
First, some quick points about the video:
1. The video takes place during the early 20th century on a movie set in Africa. The camera sweeps over the beautiful landscapes of Africa and shows two co-stars, Taylor Swift and Scott Eastwood, filming their next big film, complete with a camera crew, lions, and red lipstick.
2. TSwift looks AH-MAZING with brown hair! Am I right?
3. She is pining over her handsome (albeit, married, in the music video) co-star, Scott Eastwood.
***Side Note: Can we please bring these clothes back in style???
4. They have a dramatic falling out (because what would co-starring in a movie with a hottie be without one?).
5. At the "movie" premiere, Taylor feels a sense of longing for her off-the-market co-star, but still remembers her time on "safari" as a time of happiness and wishes that her on-screen love will always remember her.
Werk it, Taylor.
At first glance, I was floored by the beautiful scenery, the costumes, Swift's dark hair, and her handsome co-star. I even loved the song as well.
But whether the video was well done or not, people were still extremely displeased.
Why, do you ask?
Critics and other viewers throw shade to the singer calling her a "racist" and claim that she is promoting "white colonialism."
Here are just some of the comments magazines and reviews are throwing around:
The Huffington Post: "Instead of the cultural appropriation that has become almost status quo in today's pop music, Swift has opted for the bolder option of actually just embodying the political exploitation of a region and its people. It's brave, really. Almost as brave as moving sensuously in the vicinity of a real-life lion."
NPR: "[Swift] packages [Africa] as the backdrop for her romantic songs devoid of any African person or storyline, and she sets the video in a time when the people depicted by Swift and her co-stars killed, dehumanized, and traumatized millions of Africans. That is beyond problematic."
http://www.dailydot.com/opinion/taylor-swift-meryl-streep-vmas/?tw=dd: "[T]he video wants to have its old-school Hollywood romance but ends up eating some old-school Hollywood racism, too. And it’s sadly indicative of its star’s own shoddy racial politics."
Do we really live in a world today that can take this innocent, classic Hollywood romance style and turn it into a race issue?
Do you think Taylor Swift intended to spark such controversy?
Personally, I think all Swift wanted to do was capture the classic style of Hollywood and tell her story through dramatic scenery, '50s styled clothes and red lipstick. But hey, according to the media, I'm dead wrong.
What do you think?
Whatever people may think about Taylor, she still manages to crank out the singles and connect with a large audience on one level or another.
Shake it off, Taylor.