N.W.A will officially join the ranks of the many real-life musical groups (and the musicians who formed them) whose lives have been dramatized on the big screen by Hollywood, with the upcoming Straight Outta Compton. The film’s official trailer bearing the MPAA green band of approval (meaning, it will be shown in theaters) has been unveiled online – before it starts screening with select prints of fellow Universal feature Furious 7 this weekend.
Straight Outta Compton‘s green band preview, unlike the movie’s red band trailer that dropped earlier this year, has a pretty conventional structure – one that presents a nice and simple outline of the film’s narrative. The downside, however, is that in the main trailer the movie comes off as having a rather formulaic musicians biopic story arc – whereas director F. Gary Gray’s feature came off as having less of a cookie-cutter design, in the red band promo.
Gray directed the real Ice Cube in Friday twenty years ago, before he went on to helm such notable genre movies as The Negotiator, The Italian Job (2003), and Law Abiding Citizen, among others. Straight Outta Compton, judging by the trailer footage, ought to be another well-assembled film by Gray – complete with its stylish, yet naturalistic and raw visual design (fitting given the subject matter being examined).
Question is, does the Straight Outta Compton script – featuring contributions by such screenwriters as Andrea Berloff (World Trade Center) and relative newcomer Jonathan Herman – adapt the N.W.A story in a fashion that reflects the pioneering spirit of the artists who inspired it? Perhaps not, but that remains to be seen – and so long as the other elements (direction, acting) are well handled, it shouldn’t be so much of a deal-breaker if the narrative ends up being a little by the numbers.
Moving on – here are new character posters for Straight Outta Compton, introducing the various members of N.W.A in the film.
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Here is the official synopsis for Straight Outta Compton:
In the mid-1980s, the streets of Compton, California, were some of the most dangerous in the country. When five young men translated their experiences growing up into brutally honest music that rebelled against abusive authority, they gave an explosive voice to a silenced generation. Following the meteoric rise and fall of N.W.A., Straight Outta Compton tells the astonishing story of how these youngsters revolutionized music and pop culture forever the moment they told the world the truth about life in the hood and ignited a cultural war.
The Straight Outta Compton cast includes Neil Brown Jr. (Fast & Furious) as DJ Yella, Cory Hawkins (Non-Stop) as Dr. Dre, Aldis Hodge (Leverage) as MC Ren, Jason Mitchell (Contraband) as Eazy-E, Oscar-nominee Paul Giamatti as the original N.W.A manager Gerald “Jerry” Heller – and last, but certainly not least, O’Shea Jackson Jr. playing the younger version of his own father, Ice Cube, in the film.
Straight Outta Compton opens in U.S. theaters on August 14th, 2015.