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Critical Review: “Do The Right Thing”

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Free «Critical Review: Do The Right Thing» Essay Sample

Do The Right Thing                                                                                                       

Do The Right Thing is a hilarious film directed by Spike Lee, capturing the neighborhood of Bedford-Stuyvesant in Brooklyn. Its inhabitants mainly comprise of minority ethnical groups such as African Americans, Latinos, and Indian Americans. In particular, the African Americans and Latinos are associated with regular use of violence as a form of expression of their feeling. Spike Lee uses opposing elements of white and black, man and woman, conciliation and violence, and love and hatred as a means of turning people against each other. This movie has an ability to transform political sensibilities based on the opposing diverse characteristics of the community members.

The major ideas in the movie are articulated in a form of various sentiments and situations. The first one is how the minority groups are shown to relate with each other. When Mookie, a black young man, goes to meet his Latin girlfriend at home, her mother starts mumbling some unkind words to her about Mookie which he cannot comprehend. The second instance showing the relationship of love and hatred between two communities is when a group of Latin musicians runs at a black musician as a competition among heats. Ironically, the same Latin musicians start supporting black musicians after the death of the black musician that they had been competing with. The third example may be observed during the violence when African Americans wanted to burn an Asian’s store. The Asian started shouting that he also considered himself a minority just like the rest of them. This episode shows to what extent ethnicity played a critical role in the society.


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These three major scenes in the movie display how powerful the movie is in transforming political sensibilities through interracial relations. First, Buggin Out gets very angry when a white man steps on his “Air Jordans”. He perceives it so offensively and starts shouting how white people always attempt to take from the black community. This is ironic given that he refers to himself as a “righteous black man”. In another scene, Buggin Out and Radio Raheem demand that Sal takes off the pictures of people he has hung on his restaurant’s wall of fame simply because they are not black. They want pictures of black people to be hanged there instead because they are the majority customers. The third scene is when Sal’s restaurant is burned when the violence eventually erupts. It was burnt because it was owned by a white person who did not hang the picture of black people on his walls. This is an extreme move considering that the restaurant was their main source of food.

Therefore, the extreme differences highlighted in this movie directed by Spike Lee in terms of ideologies and ethnicity aid in transforming political sensibilities. The major cause of the violence in this community appears to be stereotypes and ideologies. The political institutions are the ones best positioned to deal with this through institutionalizing laws and procedures.

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Boyz N’ The Hood

This John Singleton movie is set in South Central Los Angeles, in a neighborhood that mainly consists of black people. There are three major cast members, namely Doughboy (a drug dealer and a gangster), Ricky (an aspiring football star and student), and Tre (an intelligent student who tends to underachieve due to his environment). This film has a capacity to transform political sensibilities because it represents the different sense of lifestyles and personalities experienced by individuals in the black community.

There are major key ideas from the film that make it relevant to this topic. The racial discrimination is very vibrant in this particular community. The black people consider to be discriminated by the whites since they have better political positions and wealth. In return, they retaliate negatively. Secondly, there is a general sense of lawlessness among the community members. Possession of illegal guns and drugs is rampant and this often creates violence. Thirdly, the community is dominated by male superiority, such that there is a general tendency of male chauvinism. As such, women are generally treated as second class and their opinions are not considered important.

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Three main scenes from the movie support my thesis statement. The first one is when a policeman was hitting the head of Tre just to scare him regardless of the fact that he was innocent. The black people in this community have a general dislike towards the policemen because they exercise extreme brutality when dealing with them. The other scene is the violence between two rival gangs that got so extreme that Ricky died. When the violence erupts in this community, people use all sorts of weapons and as a result it leads to disastrous results. The third scene reflects how women are overlooked in the society. When Ricky died, Tre was in a state of disbelief, anger, and shock. When his girlfriend attempted to sooth him asking him what had happened, he ignored her and pushed her away. This shows that he did not consider her as an equal partner.

To conclude, this film may transform political sensibilities as it shows the difference in the lifestyles among the individuals from the black community. Drugs, violence, illegal possession of guns, and other forms of lawlessness are rampant in most black communities. Moreover, the police use excessive brutality when dealing with suspects and this causes a sense of rebellion. However, the political authorities should handle such cases with more professionalism in order to achieve more positive results.

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