A list of Edgar Wright's favorite 1000 Movies per his list on Mubi on July 27th, 2016.
Do the Right Thing
It's the hottest day of the summer. You can do nothing, you can do something, or you can...
On the hottest day of the year on a street in the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn, everyone's hate and bigotry smolders and builds until it explodes into violence.
Do the Right Thing is an exploding fire-hydrant of colliding extremes and blazing hatred, shrunk down into a tension-fueled environment overflowing with humanity, humor, danger, sadness, pain and violence. Spike Lee's masterwork doesn't just break down the foundations of 'right' and 'wrong'; it also comments on the despair and agony behind those established protocols. Do the Right Thing is important, commanding, vibrant, and necessary. There's no other way to describe it.
Also, apparently my younger self didn't understand cinema, because about five years ago, I shrugged this off as MERELY excellent. Do the Right Thing isn't just excellent, It's life-changing and profoundly influential.
An all-time favorite.
Director: Spike Lee (First Film)
Do the Right Thing feels entirely like a rough sketch of thoughts. Thoughts of anger, and compassion and understanding, of confusion and thoughts of course, of love and hate. It's as if Spike Lee had a vision and it was perfectly set out in his head, and he put it into film exactly as his thoughts dictated.
As the quotes from Martin Luthor King jr and then Malcolm X neatly placed in the end credits, there is a lot of contradicting points within the film, and thus there is no clear indication to what Spike Lee wants us to feel, to think and in doing so, this outright fairly portrayed reality entirely means…
Shit man, it’s way too hot to do all that shit… It’s literally a hundred degrees out there in the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn and people’s hate begins to boil and boil and boil, building up to an ultimate crescendo of inevitable violence with a lot of racial angles involved. Although there are certainly many strong opinions involved, I wasn’t sure which one director Spike Lee wanted us to align with, if any at all, but that doesn’t prevent Do the Right Thing from making an impact. His writing slash screenplay may deserve even greater praise than his direction for the script truly makes every character jump out; from the loveable Da Mayor to the trouble-seeking Buggin' Out, from the…
Racism is a tough subject, it's hard to talk about it without making the usual mistakes—yet, Spike Lee achieves perfection because he approaches his themes in a surprising and much more powerful way. Generally, when we talk about racism, we associate it to the way the black communities are seen and treated by other communities around the world, but there was a sort of self-awareness in Do the Right Thing that allowed Spike Lee to create one of the most significant and relevant films in the history of cinema—this comedy is about racism in general and about the ignorance behind that social perception.
This is a film where we have Italian Americans (who own a famous pizzeria in the neighbourhood)…
Violence ends by defeating itself. It creates bitterness in the survivors and brutality in the destroyers.
That is the tail end of a Martin Luther King quote used before the end credits in Do The Right Thing. Now, if this film would've just ended with that full quote and then proceeded with the credits, I think one would come away with a very different opinion of this film. It kind of puts what you just saw into perspective and offers a strong voice to compliment the film.
But it doesn't.
Spike Lee turns around and shows another quote right after that. A Malcolm X quote stating that violence is intelligent when used in self defense. This makes things a little…
I didn't respond to this movie the way I was hoping I would. Maybe my expectations clouded my judgement. I'll probably give this a rewatch.
Everyone should watch this film.
A racket >:-(
Highly entertaining and extremely provocative film. It feels even more incendiary now than it did back in 1989 with what's going on right now in the world.
This film is as relevant today as it was in 1989. It is dedicated to a whose-who of Black American killed at the hands of police in the 80s. I didn't know any of these names, but quick research made things clear. It wouldn't be hard to create an updated list today.
There are many reasons this film is so powerful. One is that, with a few exceptions, none of the characters are flawless or perfect. Most are men and women living life and trying to make the best of it, tainted with their own biases.
The biggest take-away for me from this viewing was the importance of listening and compassion.
Fun fact I noticed on this viewing: Spike Lee's previous movie, School Daze, famously ended with Laurence Fishburne shouting 'Wake Up.' Lee clearly wasn't finished with that message, as the first lines of dialogue in Do the Right Thing are 'Wake Up.'
Do The Right Thing is a masterful, vibrant portrait of a heat-struck Brooklyn neighbourhood and the racial tensions rising up within it. Spike Lee takes what could be a grim, sobering affair and brightens it up with style: whip-pans, bold colour schemes, montage, Dutch-angles, humour, seamless improvisation and impressive long takes that allow scenes to breath and take on lives of their own. An important, powerful, entertaining film, and that's the truth, Ruth.
Spike Lee's 'Do the Right Thing' is an energetic and endearing film, which includes a great number of memorable characters, quotes and lines. Despite the constant shifting of focus between characters, the narrative never becomes convoluted while the thought-provoking ending ranks among the very best. What is the right thing to do, and more importantly how do the events occurring around an individual influence their understanding of what is right? Amazing that more than 25 years after the release, the same racial tensions outlined in the film still very much exist in society.
[community, family, violence, racism]
A stimulating study of community, violence, and cultural suppression that becomes increasingly relevant by the year. Spike Lee has something to say, and he makes sure you hear it and see it in every shot. Can't ask for anything more.
Lee's provocative style (high contrast color and production design; high-low, canted angles; lateral tracking close-ups) establishes a cinematic language that builds tension to a powerful final act, but I sometimes find it unbalanced in its high-emotion theatricality, especially during sequences in which Lee's impeccable sense of visual action and rhythm seems to clash with his weighty, arrhythmic dialogue/ dry delivery/ direction of actors. At their best, Lee's characters come across as symbols; at their worst, caricatures.…
Fino almeno a metà non riuscivo a capire il senso di questo film che seppur godibile non si capita dove volesse andare a parare. Poi tutto prende forma con qualche scena ad impatto e citazioni finali. Un film sostanzialmente contro la violenza e l'odio razziale che dimostra come una società sia instabile a causa dei pregiudizi. È un film attuale perché ancora prendono forma questo tipo di cose nella nostra società, soprattutto in America, e ciò dimostra che dobbiamo ancora farne di strada...
In conclusione vorrei dire che si è dimostrato intelligente nascondendo le sue intenzioni e facendo un gran lavoro sue personaggi. Sicuramente un film riuscito e da premiare.
This is what happens when your car breaks down on a Sunday morning and you have nothing else to do…