he video: The video for Britney Spears' latest single, "Criminal," was already deemed controversial for allegedly glamorizing gun violence when it was shot in East London last month. Now, the Bonnie and Clyde-themed music video (watch it below) has been officially released, and gun violence is just the tip of the iceberg. Spears co-stars with her real-life boyfriend, talent agent Jason Trawick. His character rescues Spears from an abusive relationship, then leads Spears on a crime spree that's, naturally, frequently interrupted so the two can engage in very-naked sex scenes that some critics consider extreme, even by Spears' standards.
The reaction: "There's a reason we don't like to see real-life couples [have sex] in movies," says Melinda Newman at HitFix. It's an uncomfortably voyeuristic experience. "This video left me wanting to hop in that shower to wash 'Criminal' off me." Yes, the "steamy shower sex" made us feel like we we were watching one of "Britney and Jason's… um, private videos," says The Huffington Post. But, at least the storyline, dialogue, and acting are classically kitschy — hinting that, thankfully, "the old, playful Britney is back." Judge for yourself:
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- The world's dumbest idea: Taxing solar energy
- Why would a young person today be religious?
- Israel and Russia are getting along. Have the neocons noticed?
- He said he was leaving. She ignored him.
- 31 TV shows to watch in 2014
- 10 things you need to know today: April 18, 2014
- Which states get screwed worst by the Electoral College?
- Why Good Friday is so important to Christians
- Why we can't stop procrastinating, according to science
- Why atheism doesn't have the upper hand over religion
Subscribe to the Week