STRAIGHT OUTTA COMPTON – Review by MaryAnn Johanson

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Even you don’t know anything about rap music, you might remember — if you’re old enough — all the late-80s national handwringing in the U.S. over the N.W.A. song “F*ck tha Police.” It’s an angry, incendiary piece of work, and whatever you may have thought about it at the time, or even still to this day, Straight Outta Compton will bring you completely to the side of the young black men who wrote and performed that song, much to the consternation of cultural watchdogs and scared white people. In this biopic of the group, director F. Gary Gray ensures we understand exactly why young men like Andre Young, aka Dr. Dre (Corey Hawkins), and O’Shea Jackson, aka Ice Cube (O’Shea Jackson Jr., the rapper’s own son, who could almost be his clone) are so justifiably enraged. Read more>>

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MaryAnn Johanson

MaryAnn Johanson is a freelance writer on film, TV, DVD, and pop culture from New York City and now based in London. She is the webmaster and sole critic at, which debuted in 1997 and is now one of the most popular, most respected, and longest-running movie-related sites on the Internet. Her film reviews also appear in a variety of alternative-weekly newspapers across the U.S. Johanson is one of only a few film critics who is a member of The International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences (the Webby organization), an invitation-only, 500-member body of leading Web experts, business figures, luminaries, visionaries and creative celebrities. She is also a member of the Online Film Critics Society. She has appeared as a cultural commentator on BBC Radio, LBC-London, and on local radio programs across North America, and she served as a judge at the first Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Film Festival at the 2003 I-Con, the largest SF convention on the East Coast. She is the author of The Totally Geeky Guide to The Princess Bride, and is an award-winning screenwriter. Read Johanson's recent articles below. For her archive, type "MaryAnn Johanson" in the Search Box (upper right corner of screen).