Five Harmony Korine videos to screw up your Jubilee weekend

Saturday June 2nd 2012


The Black Keys – ‘Gold On The Ceiling’
Shot several months ago but shelved in favour of a bland montage of unremarkably tour footage, Korine’s take on the American rock duo’s Cobra-beer-selling organ anthem surprised their fans when it landed on their YouTube channel last week. ‘Dafuq is this?’ they asked, almost as if four minutes of looped VHS fragments featuring the band being ferried around in baby carriers by their own doppelgängers wasn’t what they’d been expecting. Look out for a cameo from the ATL Twins — Korine’s new favourite misfits — who also appear in his upcoming teen rebellion movie Spring Breakers alongside Selena Gomez.

The Late Show with David Letterman
All three of Korine’s legendary appearances on David Letterman are worthy of your time — not least because he looks like an entirely different human being in each one — but this, his final interview on the show, is my favourite. Ostensibly there to promote his first novel A Crack Up At the Race Riots (he advises the audience to ‘read an older book’ instead), the 25-year-old director makes Meg Ryan look positively chatty as he mumbles his way through Letterman’s questions, occasionally dropping a killer line too perfect to be entirely accidental. Korine was booked once more to appear on the show, in 1999 to promote julien donkey-boy, but never made it to the stage after “throwing a tantrum in the green room and shoving Meryl Streep”.

‘Visual Mafia’ MTV spot
Korine was just about into his twenties when, hot on the heels of Kids, he was asked to direct this short TV spot for MTV. According to producer Aaron Rose, it was ‘the first time Harmony had ever edited his own film’, which might explain why it’s a world away from the sleek Michael Bay-style post-production we saw on Trash Humpers.

Good Will Hunting cameo
Gus Van Sant claimed that Korine’s directorial debut Gummo ‘changed his life’, going on to collaborate with the young director several times — most famously on the incomplete anthology movie Jokes. He also cast him in a small role in his next movie, the box office smash hit Good Will Hunting, in which Korine plays licentious convict ‘Jerve’.

His creative process
Korine’s casual approach to the truth makes it hard to tell how sincere he’s being here, but if this video shot at the 2010 SXSW festival is a genuine window into his creative process, it would explain a lot. Even if it’s all bollocks, there’s got to be some value in a system that produces a story about a bird-hating prostitute named Louis and her unlikely friendship with plate-throwing ballet dancer Steven in under eight minutes.