‘Straight Outta Compton’ Goes Platinum at the Box Office

Sometimes you make mistakes. Like not going to see the cultural and box office hit Straight Outta Compton, the F. Gary Gray biopic about the rap group N.W.A. that has been all the rage this weekend.

Chalk it up to personal bias. I’ve never been into rap, was nine years old or younger when the events of the movie occurred, have never been a fan of biopics about musicians and, frankly, the trailers for a movie with a bunch of no-name actors being released in the death grip of mid-to-late August did not do much for me.

But I’m not America, and Straight Outta Compton has turned out to be one of those rare productions that appeals to the woefully under-served African-American population AND is actually good. Aided by an 88% Certified Fresh Rating at RottenTomatoes, the movie, which is produced by N.W.A.’s Ice Cube and Dr. Dre, among others, debuted to a very platinum $56.1 million at the domestic box office.

The movie cost only $29 million to produce.

That’s incredible–and plaudits to Universal Pictures for making a movie people actually wanted to see without spending a whole bunch of money.

Sadly, the excellent The Man from U.N.C.L.E., working against a $70-80 million budget, could only muster up $13.5 million opening weekend take–third place behind another well-reviewed action movie with more star power (Mission: Impossible Rogue Nation). It’s a disappointing debut given how desperately I want a sequel; its one saving grace as that with its international stars, it still has some small chance to break out in a bigger way overseas.

Regardless, this surprisingly solid summer movie season has more or less come to a close with one last hit, and another win for Universal Pictures.


By Erik Samdahl
Related categories: Box Office, Drama Movies, Featured