Justin Timberlake 'The 20/20 Experience' Review: Are You Not Entertained?

Justin Timberlake
The 20/20 Experience (RCA)
Release Date: March 19, 2013

Justin Timberlake’s presence in a movie can hardly be described as a presence. More than dominating screens, he occupies space. He’s the noun (the thing that’s there), not the verb (the action), and film critics have stopped short of christening him a full-sized movie star (that honor goes to that other Mickey Mouse Club graduate Ryan Gosling). So when JT proclaimed a cinematic slant to his third solo album, it seemed sketchy. Timberlake as an actor is just amusing. Timberlake as an actor… on an album?

Forget the edginess and urgency of FutureSex/LoveSounds, the best pop album of this generation. This time, the tailored Tom Ford suit’s worn in. It fits, it’s a staple, and people craving something fresher always think it’s too safe. Where FutureSex felt like change, this just feels good. As Timberlake promised, The 20/20 Experience—which should be titled Timbaland Presents Justin Timberlake’s The 20/20 Experience—has the orchestrated feel of a motion picture, even kicking off with a familiar, melodramatic feature-presentation burst.

At its best, 20/20 is a reliable product in a Justin Timberlake assembly line. You’ll find great records—the bedroom soul-trip “Spaceship Coupe” and “Tunnel Vision,” the track you’d say, “This again?” to, if it was released as a lead single instead of “Suit & Tie”—as well as some groan moments: “I can’t wait to get you home and get you in my veins,” a metaphor on “Pusher Love Girl.” Minus the innuendo, the reprise of “Strawberry Bubblegum” could be a Doublemint jingle; the song seems close to being overdone, yet somehow irresistible. And there’s the affected but still charming “That Girl,” the result of Timbaland digitizing ’60s vinyls. A subtle addition: the self-referential moments. The “pop” in “Strawberry Bubblegum” evokes N’Sync, while “hopped up on it” interpolates “FutureSex/LoveSounds.”

Because Timbaland beats can still move you, the production does just that when JT doesn’t quite. Timb, along with producer J-Roc, remains impressive when it comes to crafting sound from nothing—the feminine background moans on “Spaceship Coupe”—so much so that we’re spoiled when it comes to his novelty. He transitions Afro salsa on the Justin Estefan track, “Let the Groove In” (initially off-putting but then weirdly engrossing) into smooth disco. And “Mirrors” is something of a new-age wedding reception song, on an album that mostly revolves around fulfillment through love and dance.

The soundscape is so enveloping, it’ll have you Googling: “Has Timbaland scored a movie??” You’ll find this, a 2012 video interview with the producer backstage at the BET Awards. It has a little over 1,500 YouTube views. He mentions scoring, but his dig at Justin Bieber’s single “Boyfriend” got the headlines. Around the 3:45-minute mark, Jenny Boom Boom asks the music maestro the obligatory JT question: Can we get a refill? “You guys created such good music together,” she proffers. The rest of her words get minced, as Timbaland, ever muffled and agitated with the music biz, concurs: “…A feeling, right? It felt so good, didn’t it?”

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While discussing the special guests that will take the stage, Rocky said that his "brother" French Montana is one of the MCs who will be there. When asked about French's recent comments about R. Kelly, Rocky decided to put his two cents in on the highly-publicized sexual misconduct allegations against the Pied Piper of R&B.

"Can I say something about that?" said Rocky when queried abut French's take on Kelly's legacy.  "I think [French] had a Kanye moment where he was trying to articulate something and his delivery just wasn't right. I think what he was trying to say was people like Bill Cosby, people like R. Kelly, [they] build up this legacy for a long time, and it just gets taken away."

Rocky continued by bringing up Kelly's marriage to the then-underage Aaliyah, expressing shock that her age on their marriage certificate was forged.

"Don't get me wrong- do I know if R. Kelly is a rapist and all that other stuff? It seems like he is," he exclaimed. "I mean, like he married Aaliyah when she was, like, 15... He married Aaliyah at 14, 15… how old was he when that alleged video came out? Too g*d damn old. I look at it like this. If that man has a sickness, he needs to be dealt with. He done beat the court dates… it goes to show the whole system is corrupted… R. Kelly was the King of R&B… and this motherf**ker now is known for being a sex pedophile.”

Watch his comments above around the 16:40 mark.

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Cardi B Comments On Government Shutdown: "Our Country Is In A Hellhole"

Cardi B wanted to give her two cents on the now-25 day partial government shutdown. The Grammy-nominated rapper got political on her Instagram page, stating that she believes our country is in a "Hellhole" and she feels terribly for those affected.

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"Now, I now a lot of y’all don’t care…  b***h I’m scared," she concludes. "This is crazy, and I really feel bad for these people that gotta go to f**kin' work without getting f**kin' paid."

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I know a lot of ya do r watch the news so I’m letting ya know shit getting real .....I ain’t going to say nothing much tho I don’t want mofos to off me.....ANYWAYS TWERK VIDEO OUT NOW

A post shared by CARDIVENOM (@iamcardib) on Jan 16, 2019 at 2:41pm PST

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R. Kelly's Former Manager Will Reportedly Surrender To Georgia Police For Threats Towards Savage Family

James Mason, R. Kelly’s former manager who is being accused of sending terrorizing, threatening text messages to the father of one of Kelly’s accusers, is reportedly surrendering to Georgia authorities.

According to The Blast, Mason will surrender in Henry County, Ga. on Wednesday (Jan. 16) after a judge issued a warrant for his arrest, citing “terroristic threats and acts.” A police report obtained by the site states that Mason told Timothy Savage, the father of Kelly’s alleged cult member Jocelyn Savage, that he was going to “f**king kill” him when he saw him, and that he was going to harm him and his family.

A second manager for Kelly, Don Russell, is also reportedly under investigation for allegedly harassing and threatening the Savage family for participating in the six-part docu-series, Surviving R. Kelly. 

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