One of the things I love the most about movie trailers is how well they can represent not just the movie itself but a particular mood and tone. And in a time where multiple trailers for each movie are not only the norm but a requirement, it’s important to see more than just the same old thing again. This is why I’m especially impressed by the marketing campaign for F. Gary Gray’s Straight Outta Compton, the story of legendary rap group N.W.A., who were the forefathers of the intense, slice-of-life rhymes born out of living in Los Angeles in the late-’80s.
The first trailer for the film, which dropped during the Super Bowl, highlighted the sheer ferocity and freshness of the group’s meteoric rise and point of view; this second trailer is all about the reality of their situations–the underbelly of it, if you will. We get a lot more of Paul Giamatti as Jerry Heller, the group’s equally tenacious manager, as well as a lot more of just how subversive the “World’s Most Dangerous Group” really was to establishment figures and police authority.
It may seem completely mainstream these days, but we can’t oversell just how “other” rap music was in America in the 1980s and how most of what was accepted sounded like “Rapper’s Delight” or Blondie’s “Rapture.” But N.W.A were saying things like “Fuck tha Police” because that’s how angry they were about how they’d been treated, and, as we see in the trailer, continued to be treated despite their successes.
The movie stars, along with Giamatti, O’Shea Jackson Jr. as Ice Cube, Jason Mitchell as Eazy-E, and Corey Hawkins as Dr. Dre, and will be hitting theaters (really hard, I’m guessing) on August 14, 2015.
Check below for a gallery of character posters, and tell us what you think of this new trailer in the comments below them.