Classified X: Film Analysis

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In his documentary Classified X, Martin Van Peebles describes three areas where African-Americans could be receive some sanctuary from the racism that pervaded almost all Hollywood films. These three places were: the Hollywood version of an all-Black film, the church, and entertainment. Black culture and music is prominent in mainstream society, but the people behind this culture don’t always receive recognition and respect for their creations. Mainstream White pop culture excitedly consumes and appropriates Black culture, but disrespects the source.
As Martin Van Peebles describes, “Outside of being required to mug it up, the Negro entertainers were encouraged to do their routines, strut their stuff, to sing and dance their hearts out.” Many early Hollywood films included music that had its roots …show more content…

He gets upset with Sal for not having any pictures of Black people hanging on his wall, despite the fact that Black people patronize his pizzeria almost entirely. In fact, Sal acknowledges the importance of the Black community as he has a conversation with Pino, saying how meaningful it is to him that the community has grown up on his food, and that he would not be successful in his own neighborhood. He shows kindness and empathy toward Smiley and many other characters. However, as soon as Buggin Out and Radio Raheem try to address the lack of Black presence of the Sal’s wall, Sal gets defensive and angry, and unwilling to consider that they might be right.
Spike Lee’s Do the Right Thing touches upon many messages involving racial tension and race issues, including the dichotomy between respect for Black art and disregard for Black artists. In various scenes, he shows the importance and breadth of Black culture, from music to athleticism. But at the end of the day, the fact that Whites appreciate the culture isn’t enough for them to appreciate the people and the

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