Do the right thing

United States, 1989

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Possibly the most significant English-language release of the 1980’s, “Do the Right Thing” is a powerful, explosive and rigorously damning exploration of American racism. In a hot Brooklyn summer, tensions between the various inhabitants of the suburb of Bedford-Stuyvesant increase due to the escalating amount of race violence and poverty in the city. A largely African-American community, the young people hang out at the local Pizzeria run by an Italian family. As the heat of the summer increases the minor insults and rivalry between the black and white people in the suburbs escalate into barely contained rage which is unleashed when a young black man is bashed by the police. The film ends with quotes by Martin Luther King Jr., and by Malcolm X. Spike Lee’s furious indictment of racism finally is more in the spirit of the latter man. With Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee, Danny Aiello, John Turturro and John Savage.

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In ACMI's collection



Spike Lee

production company

40 Acres and a Mule Filmworks

Universal Pictures



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United States
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