Thursday, September 3, 2015

STRAIGHT OUTTA COMPTON – The Review

STRAIGHT INTO FIRST

It's been a trifecta so far for "Straight Outta Compton." The biopic about the seminal South L.A. hip-hop group N.W.A was No. 1 at the box office this past weekend for the third straight week. So far the well-reviewed film has earned almost $120 million at the box office.


"Straight Outta Compton" is only the second movie this summer to top the box office chart for three weeks. The other is another Universal Pictures release, "Jurassic World." The fourth installment of the "Jurassic Park" franchise, "Jurassic World" also was on top for the three weekends following its release on June 12.

Another franchise film, "Mission: Impossible -- Rogue Nation," was the film knocked out of the top box office spot by "Straight Outta Compton's" release.


The film carries the urgency of Crash but isn't fiction. One of the things director F. Gary Gray did extraordinarily well was establish a through-line from the police violence of the 1980s and ’90s to the police violence of 2014 and 2015, consequently sending the message that perhaps “F— Tha Police” is just as relevant today as it was when it was released in 1988.

The actors chosen are not just lookalikes to the characters they are representing but appear to be accurate portrayals even down to the brutality of Suge Knight [I know some insiders in LA]. Ice Cube's son, O’Shea Jackson Jr., plays him in “Straight Outta Compton”.


It is also a fine touch to see periphery artist portrayals included like Snoop Dogg and Tupac. All in all, this film is a fine piece told while 3 of the four main characters are still alive. However, even though 'Straight...' has led the box office 3 weeks straight, don't expect to see rave reviews in the lamestream press unless you don't believe Bernie Sanders identification of institutionalized racism which extends to music genres and media praise.

This is a two blunt movie; one before and one after. And remember, Rotten Tomatoes gave it a 90%.

Can "Straight Outta Compton" continue its winning streak? The odds are in its favor. There are no major releases for the historically slow Labor Day weekend coming up.

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