Back when MTV ruled and movies rocked, the biggest stars of Hollywood crossed over into some of the most awesome videos ever made…
Despite what you might think if you’ve turned on MTV recently, music videos are alive and well… on YouTube, at least. The medium just doesn’t feel the same for those of us who grew up in the Golden Age. Sure, now you can see uncensored naked people or watch the official lyrics video to find out exactly what Nicki Minaj is saying, but what happened to the glory days of cornball tie-ins to film soundtracks? Oh, right, this parody video explains all that…
So, while the MTV of our youth may be dead and buried, that doesn’t mean we can’t use YouTube to reminisce about the good old days. Specifically the days when it was a huge-ass deal to see an honest-to-goodness movie star share the same frame with a currently hot rapper or hair-metal band. It was a goddamn art form to cheesily combine the worlds of official soundtracks with a movie’s stars, and these videos did it in the most gaudily exciting way ever. Sure, these might not make you cry like a Furious 7 song, but no modern music video could compare to these corny, commercialized combinations of Hollywood and melody!
7. Hammer – Addams Groove (The Addams Family)
I’m a big believer that 1991’s The Addams Family is a grossly underrated film reboot. Excellent casting brought Christopher Lloyd, Christina Ricci, Anjelica Huston, and the late Raul Julia together with a script that hurled the creepy/kooky family into the early ’90s in gothic humor style. The only thing that didn’t fit was the high-profile song that anchored the soundtrack, as Hammer did hurt the clan with his misguided Addams Groove… even though at least some of the aforementioned cast showed up for the video.
Wednesday and Pugsley play the biggest roles here, doing a great deal of grievous harm to Hammer as a way of welcoming him into the household. Unfortunately, he and his dancers stand out like a sore thumb. Hammer is at his most “2 Legit 2 Quit,” a phrase he roughly shoehorns into the song. The video is lacking in star power up until the end, when the real Gomez and Morticia show up, but this cheesy video harmed everyone involved. A great film’s reputation suffered, while Hammer’s already flimsy cred plummeted in the world of hip hop. Addams Groove would be his last major song in the United States.
6. Cyndi Lauper – The Goonies ‘R’ Good Enough (The Goonies)
Cyndi Lauper’s popularity in the ’80s might be hard to understand now, but the songstress was so well-known that she helped make WrestleMania happen, and this video is packed with most of the undercard for a WWF Madison Square Garden show. In fact, if you stop watching before the song actually begins two minutes in, you might not even realize this film has anything to do with Richard Donner’s The Goonies. But this long-ass, two-part video is juuust huge enough to house the entire cast of the movie along with a cameo from Steven Spielberg. Hell, The Bangles even work as uncredited extras – this video had it all!
The video was even directed by Donner, so the re-used sets and appearances by the majority of the cast make sense, though the horrifying Anne Ramsey was replaced by the equally aged Fabulous Moolah. Also, I think it helped Lauper’s performance that she was surrounded by over-the-top wrestlers and bad child actors – anyone looks like a good actor standing next to Short Round and The Iron Sheik. Plus, is it just me, or does Andre The Giant make a better mutant savior than Sloth? I know who I’d prefer to find in a sunken pirate ship.
5. Soul Asylum – I Can’t Even Tell (Clerks)
These days, I’m not half the fan I once was of Kevin Smith, but during the long wait between Chasing Amy and Dogma, I sought out any unseen stuff I could from the New Jersey native. That’s why I was so excited to find the slacker filmmaker’s less-seen music video for the Clerks soundtrack. In what may be his first color film, Kevin Smith reunited the cast with grunge favorites Soul Asylum for the shrug-rock anthem I Can’t Even Tell.
Clerks was made on a microscopic budget, with the licensed soundtrack added late in production, but Smith does a good job of combining his cast with a band that had little to do with the film he originally made. Dante and Randal recreate the same rooftop hockey game, this time losing in similar fashion to Soul Asylum. The band must have liked Silent Bob’s crew, because they’d go on to contribute to Chasing Amy and Clerks II, long after both the band and Kevin Smith had become relics of the ’90s.