FRIDAY NIGHT MOVIE REVIEW: “Straight Outta Compton” stars O’Shea Jackson Jr., Corey Hawkins (Non-Stop, Iron Man 3), Jason Mitchell (Contraband, Broken City), Neil Brown Jr. (Fast & Furious, Battle Los Angeles), Aldis Hodge (Die Hard: With a Vengeance, Leverage [TV series]), Marlon Yates Jr., R. Marcus Taylor (Dead Man Down, Life of Crime), and Paul Giamatti (The Illusionist, San Andreas). It is directed by F. Gary Gray (The Italian Job, Law Abiding Citizen) and it is written by Jonathan Herman (Ghost in the Shell ), Andrea Berloff (World Trade Center, Domestic [Short]), S. Leigh Savidge (The Legend of Dolemite), and Alan Wenkus (Eastwoodin’ [Short], Private Resort). Based around the real band N.W.A. in 1987, the story follows five young men getting a chance at fame and how controversy and bad business choices break them up.
I’ve heard many great things about this film, from talk at school to articles detailing that it got snubbed at the Oscars. Looking at the trailers, I didn’t think much of the movie, even though people said otherwise. So, I watched it to see what is exactly going on. After seeing it, I will say that it takes an acquired taste and specific audience. I never grew up during the time this story takes place, so there goes the nostalgia/experience of living in the N.W.A. era. I also didn’t grow up in harsh times, so all the hate and turmoil these characters went through in the bad part of town was never relatable. What was my draw-in for this picture? Well…really nothing. The story, although meant to be told of the history of N.W.A., doesn’t have a strong narrative. It feels loose for the most part and it is hard to latch onto what is going on. I will admit that the first half of this flick was agonizing to sit through. It was slow, boring, and didn’t have anything to keep me interested. I felt like turning the TV off most of the time. The swearing and juvenile language didn’t do much for me either. But I stuck with it, and thankfully the second act saved this story. It was more engaging, the characters got more depth, and I actually cared. I’m not into the rap genre, I never was. I know who some of these figures are though, and I thought it was cool to see some famous people scattered throughout the plot. The acting with these characters was pretty good. There were some very solid performances, and I thought that everyone did their job well. Did I think that they got snubbed at the Oscars? Well, when compared to the nominees like Matt Damon, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Michael Fassbender, I would say no. But they did a good job nonetheless. I want to mention that Ice Cube’s son shows a striking resemblance to his father, which really helped his performance more in portraying the rapper/actor. The directing of this release was fairly good, with some notable camera shots that I was impressed by. He really got the lingo down of the world that these people lived in and how dangerous it is. Even though I couldn’t stand the juvenile dialogue, I will say that it served the purpose of realism. It definitely got moe controlled in the second half, like I said before, which really boosted the score. Really, all I can say about this film is that it was good. It wasn’t great or one of the best movies of 2015, but it served its purpose. That purpose ranges from detailing police brutality of that time and how fame can deceive people. Sorry that this is a rather short and blunt review, but not much happened in this film. It just started, and slowly began to end. As stated before, this one takes an acquired taste, so people like me may not find this to be that enjoyable. Others who can relate will find it awesome, which I think was the largest audience that got this popular. In the end, I’d say that it is definitely overrated, but it isn’t bad. FINAL SCORE: 78%= Juicy Popcorn
Here is the trailer: