Monday, August 17, 2015

No Way Amy

The critics have generally liked the weekend's big hit, Straight Outta Compton.  But not Amy Nicholson in the LA Weekly.  She say it's not political enough.

Seemed plenty political to me. Sure, it wasn't all about politics, but then, neither was N.W.A.  With three protagonists and a lot of story to tell, it would be a mistake to let the politics dominate.  If anything, the movie gives short shrift to the creation of the music. After a few early feints in that direction, it's just understood that they're masters of rap and can make great stuff whenever they want.

Of course, if the film were more political, it probably would have sounded like all the mindless stuff you can read in so many reviews, including Nicholson's:

How grim is it to watch [the Rodney King beating] in 2015 and admit that, long after N.W.A.'s brave feud with the FBI, things have actually gotten worse?  Now we even have more cameras--yet the victims so often are dead. Meanwhile, in last year's Ride Along, Ice Cube played a cop who fires guns at unarmed civilians, falsely accused a kid of assaulting a police officer and brags that his Wi-Fi password is "SuspectShot23."

I'll ignore the last sentence--I only put it in to show how silly Nicholson is.  As for the rest, this is the sign of someone who doesn't want to think beyond slogans.  Race relations are a very complex issue, and the part the police play, as well as whether or not the situation has improved in the last few decades, should not be treated with reflexive responses.  And as long as this attitude wins the day, it's likely the situation won't get better as quickly as it might.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

That feud with the FBI was brave all the way to the bank.

4:45 PM, August 17, 2015  

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