5 years ago, we were graced with the excellent biographical drama Straight Outta Compton directed by F. Gary Gray. The film depicts the rise and fall of N.W.A and the lives of its key members Eazy-E, Ice Cube and Dr. Dre. We see how N.W.A became the ultimate hip-hop group that brought gangsta and political rap to the forefront.
The film exemplifies the racial inequalities of 1980s America by showcasing the lives of young Black men within the era and the constant police harassment they experience. The treatment of N.W.A and other young black men echo the same treatment people of colour still experience today. Although, the film’s main goal is focusing on the band while being a great educational tool in understanding police brutality. One particularly striking moment is the police harassing Ice Cube who then is inspired to write their most popular track ‘Fuck Tha Police’. The reaction of white America is also depicted throughout the film, showing uproar of young black men openly discussing the unfair treatment and prejudices they face from police. We are also greeted with the infamous moment where the cop’s theatre to jail N.W.A and shut down the concert if they sing ‘Fuck Tha Police’. In true N.W.A style they sang it anyway.
Straight Outta Compton is an amazing film in the way it portrays the lives of N.W.A whilst also sticking true to the hardships and struggles all the members faced. Like all biographies once watching you will understand the meaning and motive for all of N.W.A’s hits and the way they spoke the truth to America.
Straight Outta Compton is available to watch on Netflix.