As 2017 comes to a close and Christmas has come and gone, Jay Z and director Ava DuVernay are still handing out gifts to the masses. The duo's most recent collaboration is a creative match made in heaven.
On Friday, the visuals for Hov's "Family Feud" from his hit album 4:44 dropped exclusively on Tidal bringing the Internet to a screeching halt. In the eight-minute short film, DuVernay creates an afro-futuristic America set 100 years from now, with people of color and a council of women known as the “Founding Mothers” running the country.
Stunning cinematography paired with elaborate costumes straight out of a Baroque painting makes the video one of the best of the year.
The cast is as fresh as its concept, featuring transgender activist Janet Mock, Native American actress Irene Bedard, and actors like Michael B. Jordan, Rosario Dawson, Jessica Chastain, Brie Larson, Constance Wu, Mindy Kaling, America Ferrara, Rashida Jones, Thandie Newton and others. Beyoncé and Blue Ivy also round out the stellar cast as Jay Z's anchors.
Twitter was set ablaze by the video. Many people commenting on the diverse cast while others were amazed by the utter beauty of each shot and scene.
The “Family Feud” video gave me goosebumps, so much black excellence— Helga G. Pataki ♐️ (@Ambitious_Lush) December 29, 2017
Beyonce was working hard in family feud. but Trevante was working harder. pic.twitter.com/vIfPJsL5Cp— Farren Jean Andréa (@FUCCl) December 30, 2017
the video for Family Feud is the Dynasty remake that I truly want— Fariha Róisín (@fariharoisin) December 30, 2017
somebody link me to family feud video or gimme a tidal acct— Introducing...The Coziest boy ever..CozyBoy Meech (@meechonmars) December 30, 2017
Family Feud. #444 pic.twitter.com/lg3SjU2HaJ— THIRDWARDTRILL (@beyslayedyou) December 29, 2017
One the most incredible things about the video was the director's commentary she provided on Twitter. Every major detail was explained.
Other actors from previous DuVernay projects like David Oyelowo who played MLK in 2014's Selma reunited on the "Family Feud" set.
The Founding Mothers. What else is there to say? I believe in our power. And I appreciate these dynamic artists who came out on a Saturday to represent all kinds of women at the table. Not a seat. ALL THE SEATS! #FamilyFeudFilm pic.twitter.com/LZFTuYBwJn— Ava DuVernay (@ava) December 30, 2017
Next up is a reunion of sorts. For the eleven people who saw my second feature film MIDDLE OF NOWHERE, Ruby and Brian are back and reincarnated as keepers of the peace. Much love to @Emayatzy + #DavidOyelowo! My people. #FamilyFeudFilm pic.twitter.com/LGWD3kp745— Ava DuVernay (@ava) December 29, 2017
A family drama on par with The Godfather was a constant theme throughout the film. Thandie Newton and Michael B. Jordan were the stars of a major love triangle.
The first scene focuses on errors. All families hurt each other. Mistakes are made. Expectations unmet. Jealousies fester. Dramatizing that energy are @michaelb4jordan, @thandienewton + @_Trevante_. Some behind the scenes snaps of their gorgeousness... pic.twitter.com/fmctKrJfO8— Ava DuVernay (@ava) December 29, 2017
But the most prominent theme in the film was this idea of change. Starkly contrasting with today's political climate, DuVernay envisions a brown, black and female future where a black man and a Native American woman are both presidents.
Next scene is about... actually I won't tell you what we think they are about. This piece is for you. You decide. Loved working with @OmariHardwick @IreneBedard1 + @Jes_Chastain. They were all busy. But all came to play and I loved sharing the time with them. #FamilyFeudFilm pic.twitter.com/2yLftTRJbr— Ava DuVernay (@ava) December 29, 2017
I loved the idea of their being Co-Presidents of the United States in the future. And that a Native American woman was one of them. One of the first ideas I shared with @S_C_. He was all in. We had fun dreaming this up. This country will not stay the same. #ChangeIsComing pic.twitter.com/IsRYwV62Hr— Ava DuVernay (@ava) December 29, 2017
Take a look at a snippet of the short film "Family Feud" below, or watch the full version here on Tidal.