Do the Right Thing is a dramatic comedic film that was directed by Spike Lee. The movie was released in 1989. Lee served in three capacities for the film: writer, director and producer of the movie, Ernest Dickenson was the cinematographer and Barry Alexander Brown was the film’s editor. For this film, Lee garnered together some notable actors and actresses, including Ruby Dee and Ossie Davis, Rosie Perez, Samuel L. Jackson, John Tuturro and Martin Lawrence. The setting of the movie is in Bedford-Stuyvesant; which is a neighborhood in Brooklyn, New York. This particular neighborhood is made up of several ethnic groups that include African Americas, Italians, Koreans, and Puerto Ricans. The movie takes place on a particularly hot day during the summer time. The extreme heat causes tensions between the different races in the neighborhood. In this paper, I will attempt to show how mise-en-scène, camera work, editing, and sound are used to convey “explicit” and “implicit” meaning in one scene in Do the Right Thing. The scene that I will be analyzing takes place towards the end of the movie in which all the racial tensions that were boiling over erupted like a volcano and spewed out. This particular scene is about five minutes in length and is composed of about 25 shots. It takes place at the end of the day after Sal’s Famous Pizzeria has closed. We see that the pizzeria is closed and Sal is having a conversation with his sons Vito and Pino about him wanting to change the name of his store to Sal and Son’s Pizzeria. He also tells Mookie, “You are like a son to me.” The suddenly we here banging on the door, it’s the neighborhood kids wanting to get a slice of pizza. Although the pizzeria is closed, Sal tells a reluctant Mookie... ... middle of paper ... ...xt shot we observe them on the outside, for this Brown uses a straight cut rather than a jump cut to promote continuity into the next scene. All the scenes in the movie including this one take places in chronological order in a linear fashion. The editor also uses reverse angle cutting as well. In the end, this particular scene of Do Right Thing, has both implicit and explicit meanings. Work Cited Do the Right Thing. Dir. Spike Lee. Perf. Danny Aiello, John Turturro, Giancarlo Esposito, Martin Lawrence, Bill Nunn, Richard Edson, Roger Guenveur Smith and Spike Lee. Forty Acres and a Mule Filmworks.1989. Streaming (Netflix) “Do the Right Thing.” IMBD.com. Internet Movie Database, n.d. Web. 23 Apr. 2011. < http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0097216/> Stanley, Robert H. The Movie Idiom: Film as a Popular Art Form. Illinois: Waveland Press, Inc. 2011. Print
This week’s readings of the reviews of Spike Lee’s ‘Do the Right Thing’ and Marilyn Fabe’s “Political Cinema: Spike Lee’s ‘Do the Right Thing’, raised a number of questions regarding not only the moral issues the film addresses but also the intention of the artist. This dialectical opposition, which Pamela Reynolds suggests “challenges the audience to choose” (Reynolds, p.138) between the narrativized hostility shown between that of the hero and villain. More specifically Lee’s portrayal of violence vs passive opposition. This can be perceived through Lee’s technical employment of contradictory quotes from Martin Luther King, Jr and Malcom X at the conclusion of the film, which not only highlights this concern but also deluges further into themes of political opposition. Marylin Fabe discusses this where she states that Spike Lee’s film carries a “disturbing political message” (Fabe, p.191). Arguably, ‘Do the Right Thing’ acmes themes of racism (Black vs White); with underlining motifs of imperialism (colonisers’ vs colonised), psychoanalytic (power vs powerlessness) and even Marxist theory (ownership vs public space/consumption), with Clarence Page stating that Lee provides a “public service… (not trying) to provide all the answers, but raising the questions.” (Reid, P.144). In saying this we explore this concept of the role of the artist, with Georgopulos stating that the role of the artist is to create a consciousness within the audience by revealing a fraught set of truths about the human condition. Thusly, the reactions and responses to the films reveal Lee to be successful in conveying his intentions, which back in its zenith, explored this issue of racism in a way that had rarely been seen, and presented the ways in which t...
Stereotyping, racial slurs, and labeling and norms are seen and used on a daily basis and can be observed in virtually any aspect of life, from race to religion. These aspects are used repeatedly throughout the popular movie “Gran Torino.” Clint Eastwood plays the raunchy character Walt Kowalski, a Korean War Veteran, whose memories from the war continue to haunt him. His values, and beliefs lead him to pass judgment upon others that he encounters. He doesn’t seem to get along with anyone in his decaying Detroit neighborhood but an unlikely bond with his Hmong neighbors lead him to redemption, coming face-to-face with the same catastrophic bias’s consuming the community gang members that have consumed him.
Spike Lee’s film Do The Right Thing is a film that explores race relations within the United States. Some of my favorite shots of the film are part of the scene at Sal’s when Buggin Out returns with Radio Raheem and Smiley, demanding that black people be added to the wall. This scene begins with a medium shot of Buggin Out, Raheem and Smiley as they enter Sal’s. The camera then pulls out into a medium long shot of the group. Once they advance, the camera tilts upwards into a medium shot of Raheem and a medium close-up of Buggin Out. The medium shot remains throughout the beginning of the scene. The shots change as the group and Sal exchange words. The use of the dutch angle is what makes this scene so visually striking for me. The camera is
Do The Right Thing was Spike Lee’s first landmark film. Do The Right Thing is a movie that brings awareness to the racial tensions when people in a Brooklyn neighborhood of different racial and cultural backgrounds coexist, which ends in a tragedy. The film was a great success receiving many of awards and earned two Academy Award nominations for Best Original Screenplay and Best Supporti...
The 1989 film Do the Right Thing explored the conflict of racial tension and unique camera elements. Directed and produced by Spike Lee, Do the Right Thing combined a series of low and high-angle shots while also incorporating close ups and slow motion. Through the use of panning, the audience was able to get a break from the action and reflect on the events of the film. Spike Lee’s collaboration of film components added humor and realistic emotions to the story. While the controversy of whether Mookie “did the right thing” will always be in favor of the viewer. Depending on how an audience member connects with the film will spark a variety of different emotions for that person. Do the Right Thing is a film that reflects both controversial ideals and unique film elements.
Spike Lee is brand name when it comes to the film industry. When you try to ask any group of people their opinion about this man, you will probably receive numerous positive responses from the film community as well as the African American community. Do the Right Thing (Spike Lee, 1989) is a film that illustrates how racial conflict can become a reality while showing the repercussions that come with racial segregation. Spike Lee uses a number of tools to write and produce the film in order to ensure the message reaches his intended audience in the best way possible. The use of location, soundtrack, and dialogue is abundant in this film. Therefore, this film analysis paper is for Spike Lee’s Do the Right Thing (1989). It is a film in which racial segregation ignites riots in a neighborhood dominated by the black population. The heightened scene of this film analysis is where Spike Lee throws a trash can and it is from this that hell breaks loose and riots begin.
‘Then came the films’; writes the German cultural theorist Walter Benjamin, evoking the arrival of a powerful new art form at the end of 19th century. By this statement, he tried to explain that films were not just another visual medium, but it has a clear differentiation from all previous mediums of visual culture.