“We Cry Together” by Kendrick Lamar

Honestly, this song isn’t the same without the video.

For me, this conversation would have stopped at the momma stuff… Lol, but objectively this was some crazy performance art! I know that, based on the modern discourse on social media, artists like Kendrick Lamar and J. Cole aren’t everyone’s cup of tea. But this to me is on another level.

The nearly six-minute video, which was shot in one continuous take, shows the two moving about the home during an argument while reciting their lyrics from the song. The intensity is heightened by the subdued but striking multicolored lighting. Both artists deliver their lines emphatically, and the viewer gets to feel the impact of the harsh lines they throw at each other during the argument before it winds down and they fall into each other’s arms. Then they both engage in sex on the living room couch. The camera then pans out to show the entire film set with the artificial lights.

The “We Cry Together” film was directed by Lamar along with his pgLang partner Dave Free and Jake Schrier. Adam Newport-Berra served as the cinematographer. In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Paige spoke about her experience working on the short with Kendrick, revealing that it was shot at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic among other things. The short was also slated to be shown at a recent film festival. 

“Kendrick and I just have a really great understanding of each other. Like, he’s so committed to the truth, and so am I. I just feel like there’s so much freedom in that,” the Zola actress said. She mentioned that it took eight takes to do the video, and emphasized how in-sync everyone was during the experience. “We were just so in the pocket. And we knew what we were doing.

Check out the short film for “We Cry Together” below.