Last month, J. Cole premiered his documentary 4 Your Eyez Only on HBO, a visual companion to his 2016 album of the same title. Now, Cole has made the video available YouTube to stream. The hour-long film sees Dreamville’s MVP traveling through cities — like Ferguson and Baton Rouge — that have been subject to mass media coverage over police brutality and racial tensions.
Prior to the documentary’s release, J. Cole spoke to The New York Times, saying, “I felt like it would be mad powerful for black people to see black people talking to each other. And you see a rapper who’s considered one of the biggest in the game, just listening.” Directed by Scot Lazer and Cole himself, the film “illustrate[s] how their struggles over viable housing, voting laws for felons, integration, and more mirror the frustrations felt across the nation.” In addition, J. Cole’s recording studio was raided by a SWAT team after it was reported as a possible drug house. The incident is featured in the film, which was the inspiration behind album cut “Neighbors”.
This is also J. Cole’s second documentary. His previous album, 2014 Forest Hills Drive, came with a similar visual follow-up. Before the release of 4 Your Eyez Only, a documentary-style film entitled Eyez was released with music videos for the songs “Everybody Dies” and “False Prophets”.
4 Your Eyez Only was the third-largest debut of 2016 — right behind Drake’s Views and Beyoncé’s Lemonade — and recently became certified platinum. J. Cole has become particularly famous for going platinum with no features, as he also did on 2014 Forest Hills Drive. Cole is now taking a victory lap with his fourth consecutive number one album and a world tour starting in June 2017, where he will headline Jay Z’s Made In America festival. Catch J. Cole on tour this summer and check out the 4 Your Eyes Only documentary on YouTube now.