Do the Right Thing
Director: Spike Lee Run Time: 126 min. Format: 35mm Rating: R Release Year: 1989
Starring: Danny Aiello, Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee, John Turturro, Spike Lee
We begin our journey through Spike Lee’s New York in Bed-Stuy, with his most well known and well regarded film, DO THE RIGHT THING.
Inspired by a heat-fueled episode of ALFRED HITCHCOCK PRESENTS, as well as the racially motivated attack of Michael Griffith in Howard Beach, and the murder of Eleanor Bumpurs at the hands of the police, Spike’s Oscar nominated screenplay blends a larger than life theatrical sensibility with the many harsh systemic realities that continue to torment Black Americans everyday. The film possesses the unique ability to incite anger, laughter, sadness, and the constant feeling of sweltering heat all in swift succession during its two hour runtime.
DO THE RIGHT THING also features incredible performances across the board from many of Spike’s classic repertory of players, along with reliably distinct work from cinematographer Ernest Dickerson, and one of the most iconic opening credits sequences in modern cinematic history. This classic film and its influence will always be felt, and forever stitched into the fabric of Black culture.