August 24, 2015
Movie Review: Straight Outta Compton ****1/2
Don't feel bad. I've done it too.
I have very eclectic taste in music. I have always said I like everything, except rap music. The term, I always said, is an oxymoron.
Well, I've changed my mind. I'm adding rap music to my list.
Straight Outta Compton is a great film that gave me an understanding of what rap is all about. And even though I probably won't be purchasing any CDs or downloading any rap, I appreciate what it stands for. It comes from people unlike you and me (I know this because you're my friends) who live very different lives from ours.
But I digress. On to the movie review: Straight Outta Compton is 2-1/2 hours and I never looked at my watch. It's an engrossing account of the road to stardom for an unlikely group of kids who were by no means angels (and I'm sure the film downplays all the trouble they got into), and who caused a shift in the music industry and created a new genre of music. Their lyrics are from their life experience.
I would have liked a little more depth about how their music came to the attention of the public - the movie makes it seem that they just made their record and voila! it went viral. Well, not viral in those days, but you know where I'm going with this.
Regardless, I cared about each one of them and their relationship with each other; I was sad when they split up; scared when they got direction from a person they trusted who turned out to be crazy; tearful when Eazy-E died of AIDS before they have a chance for a reunion.
I was involved. I loved it.
I have one nit to pick. Eazy-E died in 1995, yet there's a scene of him in his house with a big flat-screen TV. They may have been around, but they didn't look like what we know today.
BTW, O'Shea Jackson, Jr. is fantastic in the part of Ice Cube, his dad.
4-1/2 out of 5 stars for Straight Outta Compton.