BY: John “Hennry” Harris
The N.W.A. biopic Straight Outta Compton is a smash hit critically and financially – and to the surprise of CNN, there was not any violence.
CNN host Ashleigh Banfield reported, “Some movie theaters were worried about violence when Straight Outta Compton hit the screen. Instead, it only led to longer lines, ticket lines and some big money, too.”
As a precaution, some theaters beefed up security in anticipation of potential violence after a shooting occurred recently at a theater in Louisiana during the screening of Trainwreck. The shooter was 59-year-old John Russell Houser, a white man, and any anticipated violence at Straight Outta Compton just did not materialize, but huge profits did.
The film earned $56 million+ on its opening weekend, a record for an R-rated film released in August, more than doubling its own sales projections and tripling the sales of the No. 2 film of the weekend.
CNN law enforcement analyst Cedric Alexander to discuss the film and all he could seem to refer to is N.W.A.’s incendiary hit “F*ck the Police”.
“There are some police organizations that are calling on people — members and maybe even beyond their members — not to see this movie because of the message they think it sends,” said Alexander, who was a police officer in the 1980s when the group’s hits first came out. “We really have to get away from this whole ‘f the police’ to ‘support the police.’”
Interestingly enough, Alexander does not ever address the LAPD, most notably its Rampart CRASH division, which was created to be an anti-gang unit, but ended up being one of the most widespread cases of documented police misconduct in United States history. More than 70 officers in the division were implicated and responsible for horrific offenses which included unprovoked shootings, beatings, planting false evidence, frame ups, the stealing and dealing of narcotics, bank robbery, perjury and the covering up of evidence to all these offenses.
These were the police that N.W.A. and the Black community were up against and inspired the song “F*ck the Police.”
Straight Outta Compton takes place during the 1980’s, chronicling the rise of N.W.A., a group from the drug and gang riddled streets of Compton, CA to becoming one of the most influential groups in the history of hip-hop. Group members Andre “Dr. Dre” Young and O’Shea “Ice Cube” Jackson, who also serve as producers on the film, are still highly influential in the entertainment industry today.
In the end, even Alexander had to concede that the movie is truly about the history of the group.
Alexander seemed to be stuck on the song “F*ck the Police” while fans were jamming to sounds that made N.W.A. a favorite and forced America to pay attention to the atrocities being faced by the community at the hands of the police.