Critics Consensus

Straight Outta Compton Is A Powerful Biopic

Plus, The Man from U.N.C.L.E. is slight but fun, and Difficult People is Certified Fresh.

by | August 13, 2015 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got hip-hop legends (Straight Outta Compton, starring O’shea Jackson, Jr. and Corey Hawkins) and Cold War super spies (The Man From U.N.C.L.E., starring Henry Cavill and Armie Hammer). What do the critics have to say?

Straight Outta Compton (2015) 89%

N.W.A.’s revolutionary blend of provocative lyrics, sophisticated production, and self-mythology continues to reverberate across the pop culture landscape.  Critics say Straight Outta Compton is an energetic document of the distinct personalities (and social conditions) that made the group hip-hop royalty — without succumbing to hagiography. The film primarily focuses on wordsmith Ice Cube (Cube’s real-life son O’shea Jackson, Jr.), studio genius Dr. Dre (Corey Hawkins), and hustler-cum-rapper Eazy-E (Jason Mitchell), as they rise from Compton celebrities to controversial chart toppers before suffering at the hands of the music biz and personal acrimony. The pundits say Straight Outta Compton doesn’t stray too far from biopic conventions, but the performances, the settings, and (especially) the music are powerful enough to delight old fans and newcomers alike.

The Man From U.N.C.L.E. (2015) 68%

The world isn’t exactly hurting for stylish retro spy flicks (or remakes of old TV shows, for that matter), but critics say you could do a lot worse than The Man From U.N.C.L.E., a breezy, picturesque tale of intrigue with an attractive cast and a charming sense of humor. Two agents — American Napoleon Solo (Henry Cavill) and Soviet Illya Kuryakin (Armie Hammer) — team up to stop a mysterious criminal organization that threatens both nations.  They get an assist from Gaby Teller (Alicia Vikander), an East German mechanic who has an inside track on how to infiltrate the gang. The pundits say The Man From U.N.C.L.E. isn’t in the same league as the Mission: Impossible movies, but director Guy Ritchie keeps things moving at a brisk pace, and the period clothes, sets, and vehicles provide plenty of vintage eye candy.

What’s Hot on TV

True Detective : Season 2 (2015) 62%

In True Detective‘s second season, memorable moments and intriguing characters bump up against an inconsistent tone and an overabundance of plot threads.

Strike Back: Legacy (2015) 93%

Strike Back‘s final season promises a big finish fueled by compelling characters and sensational video game-style action.

Difficult People: Season 1 (2015) 88%

Difficult People makes the unlikable likable with mean-spirited, unhappy characters who still can’t help but amuse.

Also Opening This Week In Limited Release

  • Meru (2015) , a documentary about an attempt to scale one of India’s most treacherous peaks, is at 92 percent.
  • Tom at the Farm (2015) , a thriller about a young man whose presence at his deceased boyfriend’s funeral elicits strong emotions from the dead man’s brother, is Certified Fresh at 80 percent.
  • Noah Baumbach‘s  Mistress America (2015) , starring Greta Gerwig in a comedy about a  college freshman whose soon-to-be stepsister leads her on a series of adventures, is at 79 percent.
  • Fort Tilden (2015) , a comedy about two self-absorbed Brooklynites who take an ill-fated trip to the beach, is at 79 percent.
  • People Places Things (2015) , starring Jemaine Clement and Regina Hall in a comedy about a man navigating both single parenthood and the big-city dating scene, is at 77 percent.
  • Fort Tilden (2015) , a comedy about two self-absorbed Brooklynites who take an ill-fated trip to the beach, is at 77 percent.
  • Prince (2015) , a drama about a troubled teenager who falls in with a local criminal in order to attract the attention of his dream girl, is at 63 percent.
  • The Boy (2015) , starring David Morse and Rainn Wilson in a dark drama about a nine-year-old with a disturbing propensity for violent acts, is at 50 percent.
  • Final Girl (2015) , starring Abigail Breslin in a thriller about a young woman who turns the table on a group of boys who try to hunt her for sport, is at 43 percent.
  • Amnesiac (2015) , starring Kate Bosworth and Wes Bentley in a psychological thriller about a man who awakes from an auto accident with memory loss and a suspicion that the woman claiming to be his wife isn’t who she says she is, is at 40 percent.
  • Big Sky (2015) , starring Bella Thorne and Kyra Sedgwick in a thriller about an agoraphobic teenager who must overcome her fears in order to survive an attack by violent thieves, is at 40 percent.
  • One & Two (2015) , starring Kiernan Shipka and Elizabeth Reaser in a drama about a pair of siblings who use their supernatural abilities to escape their repressive home life, is at 40 percent.
  • Return to Sender (2015) , starring Rosamund Pike and Nick Nolte in a thriller about a woman seeking revenge after surviving a brutal assault, is at 11 percent.

Tag Cloud

San Diego Comic-Con Walt Disney Pictures crossover concert scorecard Mary Tyler Moore teaser CNN 2017 USA Academy Awards Mary Poppins Returns IFC Films Chernobyl SundanceTV Pop TV psychological thriller cars 2020 spanish language canceled universal monsters AMC Crunchyroll based on movie Marathons Reality Competition revenge Elton John Fox Searchlight psycho Food Network supernatural game of thrones parents BAFTA LGBT 99% reviews black blockbuster remakes dceu Set visit true crime quibi Family Netflix latino FX on Hulu facebook cancelled TV series Black Mirror NYCC See It Skip It ghosts Adult Swim casting Tubi children's TV The Arrangement game show Creative Arts Emmys period drama Sci-Fi foreign Pixar TCA 2017 Nat Geo social media Polls and Games Travel Channel Arrowverse travel FX Sony Pictures talk show transformers Musical Super Bowl best technology Apple video TCA The Academy directors stoner cancelled TV shows romance Amazon Studios BET doctor who book Mary poppins OWN cooking E3 ITV sequels Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Fall TV Cartoon Network A&E twilight Lifetime Christmas movies Red Carpet discovery Song of Ice and Fire canceled TV shows Netflix Christmas movies joker 2015 streaming spain Year in Review hollywood japanese GoT YouTube Spike Music Best and Worst Christmas Peacock Mudbound fast and furious dramedy cartoon Mystery SXSW worst Infographic Biopics boxing cats sitcom strong female leads dc all-time south america nature Women's History Month Hallmark Rom-Com Writers Guild of America Martial Arts Tomatazos Esquire Disney Channel spider-man Captain marvel The Purge indiana jones TV renewals emmy awards YouTube Premium theme song El Rey Kids & Family football crime thriller Horror christmas movies WGN The Walking Dead Vudu MCU Musicals sag awards DirecTV ABC Opinion Stephen King YouTube Red Video Games FXX Comics on TV Election Holiday festivals Action Quiz Heroines zero dark thirty Britbox singing competition WarnerMedia TBS Star Wars sequel documentary NBC Lifetime Photos PBS reboot biography 007 72 Emmy Awards DGA Comic Book movies cops Pop slashers stand-up comedy award winner obituary archives Universal name the review dogs Ellie Kemper BET Awards Masterpiece Disney+ Disney Plus cancelled 21st Century Fox franchise Fantasy DC streaming service Trophy Talk Paramount Network Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Nickelodeon Spectrum Originals batman Winter TV medical drama X-Men Sneak Peek historical drama binge versus Disney streaming service Comedy ABC Family police drama venice Holidays animated Film Festival Hear Us Out war witnail GLAAD elevated horror Superheroe First Look classics ID ratings CW Seed independent cancelled television halloween spy thriller Pride Month toy story news Rocky Sundance TV Rock Apple TV+ HBO Go Podcast Endgame RT21 First Reviews composers hispanic BBC comics child's play CBS All Access Watching Series a nightmare on elm street indie adventure italian GIFs golden globes free movies TruTV crime drama Summer Disney boxoffice renewed TV shows IFC french TCM comiccon vampires hist asian-american Toys SDCC chucky docudrama Funimation Star Trek sports rotten movies we love Baby Yoda Columbia Pictures Character Guide VICE toronto FOX serial killer die hard natural history Lionsgate BBC One APB Sundance scary movies Amazon Prime Video Oscars MSNBC Disney Plus Shudder HBO Max DC Comics National Geographic Discovery Channel VH1 PaleyFest zombies adaptation Spring TV superhero laika Teen Turner Classic Movies fresh Black History Month zombie Binge Guide Avengers TNT Box Office ESPN Warner Bros. Dark Horse Comics Epix diversity screen actors guild HBO Classic Film Emmy Nominations green book mockumentary Anna Paquin Paramount Grammys Comedy Central comedies Tumblr TCA Awards 2018 nfl what to watch spinoff festival 20th Century Fox disaster TLC Certified Fresh OneApp mission: impossible mutant Turner VOD MTV television Freeform space tv talk Television Critics Association movie History Rocketman stop motion TIFF australia Film USA Network Superheroes Brie Larson Cosplay Mindy Kaling Syfy screenings breaking bad worst movies RT History Ovation CMT Marvel Studios DC Universe miniseries spanish 24 frames Extras robots Logo Schedule politics TV comic books Country political drama crime Winners Amazon Prime satire Trivia nbcuniversal Amazon harry potter Television Academy james bond BBC America CBS Animation Crackle Premiere Dates deadpool cinemax blaxploitation dark Interview Awards Apple TV Plus thriller 45 jamie lee curtis The Witch criterion E! Emmys cults PlayStation Bravo romantic comedy series rotten Countdown American Society of Cinematographers richard e. Grant TCA Winter 2020 documentaries Showtime dragons Ghostbusters TV Land comic anime Hallmark Christmas movies YA justice league Western films science fiction Calendar Cannes Pirates Marvel Television Lucasfilm anthology Fox News unscripted New York Comic Con Reality Shondaland Starz critics Marvel President 2016 finale 71st Emmy Awards The CW rt archives 4/20 LGBTQ video on demand Nominations Acorn TV Thanksgiving Trailer werewolf Valentine's Day Sundance Now aliens Alien Tarantino halloween tv Drama Pet Sematary Awards Tour kids Hulu A24 2019