Movie#1, Visual Literacy
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Rhett and Link Visual Review

This is Rhett and Link:

Best friends Rhett Mclaughlin (on the right) and Link Neal (on the left)

Best friends Rhett Mclaughlin (on the left) and Link Neal (on the right)

Together they make the most interesting rap battle music videos, one of my favorites is the Rap Battle of Manliness.

epicrapbattle_large

Rhett and Link’s Epic Rap Battle of Manliness

Click on the link above to watch the video before you read my Visual Review. It kind of helps to know what I’m talking about if you’ve watched it beforehand.

What’s this video about? This video is making fun of how men brag about their manliness, in a way it’s supposed to be ironic because all though in their rap battle they claim to be “the manliest”, they wear preppy clothes and live in cul-de-sac’s where they make “ooey-gooey bars”.

The beginning of the video starts off with Rhett cutting the hedge and Link walking up to meet him. Already you can tell that they mean for the audience to view this scene as a battle/competition of sorts, by not only having them meet in the middle like a face off, but also by cutting the screen in half with the hedge. This theme of opposing teams and split screens is imminent throughout the whole video. In the hedge scene, when the camera cuts to either rapper Rhett is always on one side (the right side) and Link is always on the other (the left side), even their wives are on the same sides of the screen as the husbands. the battle is also seen in their shirts where Rhett is always wearing red and Link is always wearing blue.

When Rhett and Link first meet up and every other time they aren’t rapping the scene is always the same (a.k.a. the hedge scene), a pristine, clean-white and organized background as seen in the well trimmed hedges and houses, hinting that they may be living in a cul-de-sac of sorts. However, when they’re rapping the background is either a black abyss or extremely dark, and chaotic like the animal room scene.Rhett-and-Link-02

The animal room scene

The animal room scene

The director makes sure that the rapper is always the center of attention, and that all the props (no matter how chaotic) are more of an after thought, by using various methods. He uses a downward camera angle and sometimes a fish eye to enlarge the face, and multiple v formations or triangles (the torches, the hanging hammers, the animals, the grills, and even the smoke at times are going off in different directions). The triangles draw the eye towards the center of the screen where the main character is.

in this picture there are two v formations the wall are pointing towards Link, and so are the saws.

in this picture there are two v formations the wall are pointing towards Link, and so are the saws.

In the jackhammer scene (and even the car scene for Link) the sun is directly behind the head.

In the jackhammer scene (and even the car scene for Link) the sun is directly behind the head.

Finally, and most important of all, the nods towards anything and everything masculine. Some are obvious: Macgyver, various tools, eagle scouts knots, and stuffed animals. Others are more subtle: Rhett’s dressed as a lumberjack, Link is wearing a mechanic’s shirt. Rhett and Link are both very manly but I don’t think either of them won. In the end I’m going to have to say the nacho cheese hose was the best part.

Check out the rest of Rhett and Link’s awesome videos:

Their first ever Epic Rap Battle

Epic Rap Battle: Nerd vs. Geek

The T-shirt War

And their Youtube show: Good Mythical Morning

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