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10 Best Music Videos of 2017

Taylor Swift, Kendrick Lamar and more of the year in visuals

Our picks for the best music videos of 2017 include everything from a cutting animated satire to a guerilla shoot in Times Square to a short film that won Film Craft Grand Prix at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. What many have in common: they are either directed or co-directed by the musicians who made the songs, giving a clarity in their vision.

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Jay-Z, “The Story of O.J.”

Directors: Jay-Z and Mark Romanek
Jay-Z has often turned to director Mark Romanek for music videos that break from hip hop’s templates. In 2004, the pair went art house cinema for the neo-realistic “99 Problems,” then in 2013 they went to the literal art museum for the Marina Abramovic-assisted “Picasso Baby.” Working with the team at The Mill, the pair created a challenging video for “The Story of O.J.” that references vintage animation’s derogatory caricatures of African-Americans to comment on the United States’ institutionalized history of racism.

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