Flying Lotus' "Never Catch Me" video featuring Kendrick Lamar turns tragedy into triumph with wildly talented dancing kids. Seriously, someone put them on Broadway, they are that good.
In the piano-driven track from Lotus' upcoming album You're Dead!, Kendrick rhymes about life and redemption and the clip's scene is a funeral for two young children, a boy and a girl. Crumpled ballet shoes and teddy bears strike pangs of grief as old black family members and friends fan themselves and comfort one another. But suddenly, the kids rise from their open caskets and execute jubilant choreography that no one in the sanctuary can see. They are dancing their way into a the next phase of human existence, and if you believe in an afterlife, they are happy to go beyond.
The dancing duo continue their expert moves out of the church and into a driveway filled with living children playing jumping rope and generally being kids, juxtaposing their death with those lives. The pair then hop into a hearse and drive off into the sunset, the boy sticking his head of out the car window and smiling in the wind. He is peaceful, as the listener should be as the last chords disappear.
Flying Lotus' visual story gives voice to a time of so much blood and death in America, especially in light of the murders of black young people like Mike Brown, Renisha McBride and Jordan Davis and all of the others that aren't national news. Kendrick's lyrics parse human complexity while Lotus' soundtrack takes us on a journey from sadness to celebration to tranquility, just like the little boy as he catches his last earthly breeze.