“Straight Outta Compton”: Oscar Contender?

The film about the rise and fall of the hip-hop group NWA had a big weekend not only at the box-office, but also at the Academy, where its screening for members drew a massive crowd and overwhelmingly favorable response. But can “Straight Outta Compton” win Oscars, or even get many nominations? I’m dubious. This isn’t a black-themed, August release like “The Help” that, owing to female performances, sticks around for months. This is a tough, exciting, crass movie about angry young men that will be swept away by more traditional Oscar movies yet to come this year. In other words, as LW’s Oscarologist Rex Okpodu suggests, the movie may be more like “Do the Right Thing” in its inability to win prizes than like “The Help” or even that head-scratching best picture winner, “Crash.”

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