I love when a film takes me into a world that I know nothing about and after watching it I feel like I have learnt something. Compton is certainly a world of its own and this movie, Straight Outta Compton most definitely immersed me into this world resulting in much entertainment, education and discussion.
I knew next to nothing about these personalities or their backgrounds – as far as I knew Ice Cube was a star for his involvement in the Jump Street movies and all I knew of Dr. Dre was when he popped up in an Eminem video every now and again. Little did I know that such an amazing story accompanies these guys lives and rise to fame. There is so much packed into this film and where other films would struggle to cope with the vast amount of content Straight Outta Compton makes it look easy. The film deals with the debate about whether or not this new wave of rap was real music, there is family drama to consider and also attention is given to the police departments treatment of black people. This is all along side the biography of these five young men. Even one of these elements would have been enough to make an interesting and engaging film but Straight Outta Compton choices to incorporate them all making this story as powerful as it possibly can be. Partly due to this huge amount of content whilst watching the movie you’ll experience nearly all emotions you can imagine. There is humour as you watch the chemistry between the group, there is tension as tempers fray frequently and there is sadness as life in Compton is all too much of a reality for these guys. I found myself sitting for the most part of the film just asking myself, did all this really happen? The story is told in a magnificent way.
The music of course plays a major role in the film too. If the music didn’t already have enough meaning, which I’m sure it does to the fans, Straight Outta Compton gives it that. I loved seeing the origin of the songs and the motivations behind them, this aspect of the movie was great for those like myself with no knowledge of the group and their music and I’m sure was a treat for those who have followed them for years. The whole cast do a fantastic job of portraying these people, the likeness to them is very impressive no more so than O’Shea Jackson, Jr. playing his father Ice Cube. This was a very clever move as it genuinely seemed like it was Ice Cube. Apart from the five main group members the film also introduces other stars of Hip-Hop and the industry along the way, each of them having a similarly striking resemblance to those that they are portraying. My only negative about the film is that due to its long running time on a few occasions my interest did flag, however it’s only a minor complaint as I way always quickly drawn back into the drama.
Straight Outta Compton is a powerhouse of a movie, the story is just unbelievable and its told in a captivating way. The pace, cast, music and the content are all there and they combine to tell this story in an awesomely entertaining manner. It’s a story that I’m so glad I’ve heard and it was so interesting to get a glimpse into this world, I recommend everyone else to do the same.
Rating – 9/10