Every film from Roger Ebert's "Great Movies" essays.
Do the Right Thing
It's the hottest day of the summer. You can do nothing, you can do something, or you can...
Do The Right Thing takes place on a hot summer day in Brooklyn and depicts the racial conflict between an Italian American pizza restaurant owner and his African American customers and how things erupt into a violent outbreak. This Spike Lee Joint touches on themes of segregation and apartheid in the USA.
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…
La última vez que la vi habrá sido en VHS. Que película tan más grande. Lee estaba loco, hacía con la cámara lo que quería: alucinantes tomas largas, finísimos cenitales, encuadres ultra-simétricos 10 años antes que Wes Anderson. Todo editado como si fuera una caricatura. Sumen la paleta de colores más bonita del mundo y listo. Cuando Radio Raheem recrea el discurso de love/hate de Robert Mitchum en Night of the Hunter mientas lanza golpes a la pantalla me quedó claro que necesitan reestrenarla en cines en 3D.
Rotunda obra maestra.
I have lived in Birmingham, Alabama for the past three years. Clearly racial issues aren't the same they were 24 years ago, but you can still feel the pain and suffering that caused so much harm throughout the previous century. My dad used to work right by the 16th St. Baptist Church, where four little girls (and many other people disfigured and injured) by a nail bomb that members of the KKK had planted. I got an melancholic, sickening feeling every time we would pass by. As if that violence, the sins people committed, will always loom over this city in one way or another.
However, racism is still a prevalent issue in the South, one that goes in many…
Written as part of a series on classic films called The Film Canon.
It’s sweltering. Radio DJ Mister Señor Love Daddy (Samuel L. Jackson) is proclaiming it to be one of the hottest days of the summer. It’s too hot to work, but Mookie (Spike Lee) makes his way to Sal’s Pizzeria anyway. As he walks, we grow accustomed to the vivid hustle of urban life in one Bedford-Stuyvesant. This little strip of humanity teems with culture and conflict. Mookie is greeted by Da Mayor (Ossie Davis), self-proclaimed mayor of the street whose wisdom and kindness is marred by his perpetual drunkenness, as well as Mother Sister (Ruby Dee), the kindly hawk who watches over the neighborhood from her stoop.…
Do the Right Thing is one of the most exciting and tragic motion pictures I've ever had the pleasure to see. It has astoundingly relevant and profound commentary on race relations in America, the most astute I've ever seen. I enjoy Spike Lee's early films immensely (particularly Malcolm X and Jungle Fever) precisely because you see his craft and his passion immersed in his work.
Every character in this movie is a colorful tapestry of people you see on the street, fully realized into tragic heroes. Radio Raheem and Buggin' Out are the black seed of discontent and protest that has been germinating for far too long. Buggin' Out's case takes on a much bigger significance than simply trying to…
The complicated ideas that Lee tossed around in his first two films - some hitting the mark, others not so much - are fine tuned in what the man himself calls "the moment I became a director". It would be a mistake to view this as an angry film raging from within the black community toward the world as Lee is too astute to fall into that trap. Instead he presents an emotionally complicated insight into the melting pot of modern urban life.
A fierce opening sequence introduces us to the miniature powerhouse that is Rosie Perez bugging out to Public Enemy (which replaced this original choice). It has dated particularly…
After putting off my screening of "Do the Right Thing" for countless years under the presumption that it was going to be a "Spike Lee hates white people movie," I finally took the time to watch it: my apologies to Mr. Lee. I never expected the sheer amount of boisterous energy, biting social and racial commentary and affecting moments in this powerful film. Despite being wholly grounded in a specific time and place, Lee's fifth film manages to be utterly timeless and easily stands as one of the greatest film achievements of all time.
Set on a hot summer day in late 80's Brooklyn, the film tells the story of the slowly increasing racial tensions between the inhabitants, business owners…
Ladies and gentlemen, Mr. John Lurie.
Somehow Spike Lee is able to get you to empathize with and understand why each and every character does what they do, even while you despise their actions.
It does feel like a 1980's PBS special though, with the cool jazz score and Sesame Street-like setting. I was just waiting for Wynton Marsalis to show up and teach Danny Aiello about brass instruments.
The worst thing about this film is that it bashes you over the head with a message of "don't be racist and everyone is alike". It's a great message and all, but it got in the way of actually focusing on characters and there ark. I also think that the opening title sequence could've been shortened by a minute or two and it wasn't really made clear if this film was going to be a drama or a comedy, because the film came off as bipolar. Some scenes made me chuckle while others left me in shock because of how dramatic it was, it can be blamed on by the direction by Spike Lee.
Despite those gripes, I enjoyed "Do…
A masterpiece. I'm kicking myself for not seeing it sooner.
I can't give this film a rating. It's too aggressive, too legitimately upsetting. The muddled melange of senselessness, racism, and testosterone is impossible for me to decipher just now. Testosterone is probably the wrong word, actually—despair bred from inequality (though not a word, strictly speaking) might be a more likely motivator behind the wholly unreasonable events depicted here.
I'm white, but that can't be the only reason why I can't relate to this world, surely.
I love the way this film is shot! The colors are bright and I liked the obscure angles used when characters were talking, it made it seem like it was breaking the fourth wall. But as for the message of the film its sad how relevant it is today. Racism isn't dead. This film isn't anti black or anti white is just is what it is.
This is a really enjoyable and mad kind of hangout movie, which except near the end where it turns into a fight, is rather funny and watchable and entertaining. It doesn't preach, it doesn't give dull and idiotic speeches about racism, instead it develops these characters which are not caricatures, instead they are true human beings with faults. The director is in the middle of the fight, staying true to his race but keeping in mind that he has to live and function in the white man's world. In the end he returns to his black community and fights in their side, but in the last scene he is an honest and impartial man again.
For the first hour or so I was thinking this one a bit too slow and overrated- then when things began to heat up as the sun went down, I began to understand what I had been watching all along. The ending shocked me in a way I didn't remember it doing- the last time I saw this was in high school, and I am older and more aware of the things Lee is referencing now, between the use of fire hoses and the image of Radio Raheem's feet in the film's climactic scene. I really struggled with it too- I was angry, upset, confused, as if I was there on that Brooklyn summer night. The films pulls you in, and forces you to wrestle with morality in a way that few others do- and most importantly, gives you no easy answers.
- 12 Angry Men
- 2001: A Space Odyssey
- 25th Hour
- 3 Women
- A Trip to the Moon
- The Great Train Robbery
- The Birth of a Nation
- Les Vampires
All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1154. An easy way of seeing how…
- The Godfather
- Seven Samurai
- The Godfather: Part II
- 12 Angry Men
- Pulp Fiction
most recent update - Thursday, March 6, 2014, 11:42 PM EST
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