Why are you in a music video completely naked, Shia LaBeouf?
In a move that shocked (OK, maybe not shocked…momentarily distracted?) the world yesterday, Shia TRANSFORMERS LaBeouf appeared au natural in the newly released “Fjögur Piano” experimental music video, by the trippy and brilliant Icelandic band Sigur Rós. First and foremost, we have to give props to Mr. LaBeouf, who’s been relatively under the radar the last few years, and relegated to sequel territory with TRANSFORMERS: DARK OF THE MOON and WALL STREET: MONEY NEVER SLEEPS. Here, he dares to try something new, unorthodox and pretty out there, and that takes guts.
But (and it’s a big but), when will celebrities realize that we can spot shameless publicity stunts a mile away? We, the general public, the fan base, the ‘alternative mainstream’, we’re smart folks! We’re smarter than we used to be, and need our celebrities’ PR moves to be a LOT more creative in a post-Paris Hilton/sex-tape world. Which is why we’re a little (no, a lot) disappointed at the super hoighty-toighty joint effort of Shia and Sigur Rós, artists we usually thoroughly respect (in spite of how different and disparate they are). In the video for the beautiful and simple piano piece, LaBoeuf and a bare-breasted blond appear frolicking nonsensically in the nude, but that’s not all; they lick psychedelic lollipops, become submerged in an underwater car, fight over butterflies, and also stare intently into each other’s teary eyes, behaving in very actorly ways. With a title card before the music video calling this a ‘Mystery Film Experiment’, you know you’re in trouble–the ‘experiment’ is still a large gaping ‘mystery’ to us, instead seeming rather art-studenty. Although Sigur Rós is a characteristically subdued group (a rare and good thing!), this ‘song’ is extremely obscure musically, amounting to nothing more than a piano instrumental, which makes LaBeouf’s inaccessibly artsy shenanigans (and the video as a whole) all the more out of place. Oh, and also: get a haircut, Shia!
Of course, this is far from the first time a male celebrity has appeared naked to gain attention, and the resulting reactions have ranged from bewildered to scandalized. Although vaginas have been making quite a name for themselves lately, let us not–let us never–forget penises. A recap of recent penis publicity:
The whole crew in MAGIC MIKE: In case you haven’t heard, there’s a film coming out at month’s end about male strippers. And Channing Tatum is in it. In case you haven’t heard. (Check out the NSFW new red band trailer, which also features Matthew McConaughey, someone who’s been naked at the wrong time in the past).
KEEP THE LIGHTS ON: This festival favorite (and Sundance alum) is a raw and unflinching look at drug addiction and gay love in the 90s, with some of the most realistic sex and love scenes ever put on film, gay or straight. Coming to theaters in August.
Michael Fassbender in SHAME: Yes, this is slightly old news, but the shot of Fassbender’s goods still has people talking, making it into George Clooney’s banter at this year’s Golden Globes.