Customer Reviews


21 Reviews
5 star:
 (15)
4 star:
 (4)
3 star:
 (1)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:
 (1)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You're not to be so blind with patriotism that you can't face reality. Wrong is wrong, no matter who does it or says it
I purchased this film just out of curiosity and of course like everyone else I was totally blown away by it. I consider it to be one the best films ever made and it is one of my favourite films. In short this film is totally mesmerising, powerful and incredibly important. Everything about the film just oozes confidence and daring. It is certainly not a film that...
Published on 17 Sep 2009 by luvstuff

versus
20 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 3 great films, disappointing presentation
I won't focus on the films too much as you're only likely to buy this box set if you have some experience of Spike Lee films already. Being a huge fan of 'Clockers' I was curious to check out Spike's earlier films, and this box set includes what I think are 3 of his best ‘joints’.
‘Do the Right Thing’ is certainly provocative but revolutionary...
Published on 16 July 2003 by jsgreen89


‹ Previous | 1 2 3 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You're not to be so blind with patriotism that you can't face reality. Wrong is wrong, no matter who does it or says it, 17 Sep 2009
I purchased this film just out of curiosity and of course like everyone else I was totally blown away by it. I consider it to be one the best films ever made and it is one of my favourite films. In short this film is totally mesmerising, powerful and incredibly important. Everything about the film just oozes confidence and daring. It is certainly not a film that suffers from a lack of imagination. This film is Lee's exposition on race and racial tension. I think ultimately that this is movie grounded in reality - no matter how PC people are they are sometimes just plain racists hiding behind smiles and that racism bubbling under the surface of polite society can explode at any moment.

Throughout the plot Lee explores the dynamics of a community in which different races have been living together for a long time and outwardly tolerating each other. However, long running issues such as economic deprivation, power struggles, questions of status, questions of responsibility, questions of history have been left unresolved and so manifest themselves in the form of racism. As well as this the inhabitants of Bed-Stuy (where the film is set) have shied away from the glaring fact that they are all different but they live alongside one another. Bed-Stuy is shown as a ticking time bomb whose time to detonate has come - on a maddeningly HOT day.

The acting performances can't be praised enough. Everyone from Lee (who plays Mookie) to Aiello (who plays Sal) to Perez (who plays Tina) to Nunn (who plays Radio Raheem) gives a cool and assured performance. I personally like Jackson's character, Mister Senor Love Daddy, a DJ-cum-philosopher who communicates his worldview over the airwaves.

The production is quirky and fresh. Every scene is vibrant and visceral.

To say that the dialogue is second to none is not an exaggeration. It is partly the dialogue that makes this film so outstanding. It's witty, intelligent and disconcerting. This movie makes you think really hard about your own prejudices.

The soundtrack is very important as the opening of the film makes very clear. Public Enemy is used to great effect.

By the close of the film two arguments are presented, one for the use of violence as self defence (Malcolm X) and one for non-violence (Martin L.King). I don't believe that Lee is claiming that either ideological viewpoint is right or that it should be used as a rule. I think that he is challenging the viewer into asking "What is the right thing?"

This is a key movie that deserves to be seen.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lee's Masterpiece, 23 Nov 2000
By 
Quite simply, this is Lee's best and most powerful film to date. He combines wit and anger to illustrate the evils of racism. As the temperatures rise on the hottest day of the summer, tempers begin to fray in a Brooklyn neighbourhood. When night falls and a young black man dies at the hands of the police, these racial tensions boil over into a neighbourhood race riot. The tight script and strong acting, with Lee taking the lead, as well as the noise of Public Enemy combine perfectly to produce one of the best African-American films of all time. In my top 10 films ever.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 20 years later, still hits home, 19 Sep 2011
By 
rob crawford "Rob Crawford" (Balmette Talloires, France) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
When I first saw this film, I was utterly mesmerized by the lively, tumultuous tableau that Lee so masterfully painted. The dazzling array of characters, the tensions (racial or otherwise) that needed release in the heat, the sense of a fractious community - Lee really held it together. Then the climax of violence that came, from the spark of a needless killing, and threatened to engulf everyone. I loved it then and loved it now, 20 years after I first saw it.

Nonetheless, the film had aged considerably for a number of reasons. First and foremost, race relations have evolved decisively. We have a black president, in spite of all our persistent problems of poverty, under-achievement, and drugs. But I also found some of the acting a bit stilted, even from two great actors, Aiello and Samuel Jackson; even Ossie Davis and Turturro seemed locked in rather two-dimensional characters. Moreover, the complete absence of the drug culture makes the picture incomplete. Lastly, I found the climax, and particularly Mookie's unexpected action, harder to believe than I did when younger. As such, I find that there are new productions, such as the incomparable The Wire, have succeeded far better in exploring through art the issues that underlie America's ongoing urban crisis.

That being said, many of the performances are still fresh, both hilarious and affecting. The trio of men (with Sweet Dick WIllie) in ongoing dialogue, the wonderful anger of Rosie Perez, and the simmering rage of Ruby Dee are worth the price of admission. Moreover, the internal dialogue that the film is designed to provoke - similar to Bertold Brecht - is as effective and relevant as ever. This is a pioneering work that is well worth viewing again. It may even become a classic.

Warmly recommended.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Film About (Black/White) Racism Ever Made?, 2 Dec 2011
By 
Keith M - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
Spike Lee's 1989 masterpiece Do The Right Thing is arguably the best film about racism ever made. I was trying to think of other comparators, and whilst there are of course many films about racism (and not just black/white racism) the other outstanding such film (for me) is probably To Kill A Mockingbird. However, despite being primarily about racism, the differences between the two films could not be greater. Perhaps the most (on the surface) surprising difference is that To Kill A Mockingbird (made in 1962) paints a relatively restrained (subtle) picture, whilst Spike Lee's later film is much more aggressive in its approach. This is (obviously) partly explained by changes in perceptions of film censorship over the period, partly by the ethnicity of the respective authors, but also seems to reflect the (perhaps worrying) conclusion that Lee considers that a more violent (revolutionary) stance is required on the issue nearly 40 years after the earlier film/book.

Lee's film is set in Brooklyn on the hottest day of the summer and documents how racial tensions spill over into a dramatic and violent climax. The narrative of the film centres on Sal Fragione's (played by Danny Aiello) pizza parlour, which it is pointed out by the black character Buggin Out (Giancarlo Esposito) shows only pictures of white Italian-Americans on the wall, with no African-Americans represented. Tensions rise to the extent that one night Buggin Out and fellow negro Radio Raheem (played by Bill Nunn) enter the pizzeria, a dispute and fight ensues with Radio Raheem eventually being strangled to death by an arriving police officer. This death provokes pizza boy Mookie (played by Lee) to throw an empty dustbin through the pizzeria window leading to the riot which culminates in Sal's restaurant being burnt to the ground.

The film captures perfectly the atmosphere of racial tension between black, white, hispanic, Chinese, etc, and convincingly portrays the tinderbox of the community in the swelteringly hot weather. It combines superb cinematography, soundtrack (R&B/Hip-Hop based, featuring Public Enemy) and editing to provide a compelling cinematic spectacle.

Amongst an excellent cast, the film provides a career best performance from Danny Aiello (who was nominated for the Best Supporting Actor Oscar) and an outstanding performance from John Turturro (as Sal's racist son Pino). Sterling support is also provided by Ossie Davis as the drunken character Da Mayor, Giancarlo Esposito as Buggin Out and Ruby Dee as Mother Sister.

The key issue arising from the film was whether or not Lee's character Mookie 'did the right thing' by igniting the riot in response to the death of his fellow African-American Radio Raheem. Lee concludes the film by showing photographs of Malcolm X (with his violent approach to resistance) and Martin Luther King (with his advocation of non-violence), but providing no prescriptive view on which approach should be followed.

A thought-provoking and compelling cinematic masterpiece.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ONE OF THE BEST AMERICAN FILMS, 3 Dec 2009
If I had to name 10 best American films, this Spike Lee joint would probably enter the competition, fighting with the best Ford, Hawks, Altman, Lang, Hitchcock, Huston, Welles, Burton, Lynch and other classics. The beautifully portrayed characters who are at the same time strong symbols,
incredible dramatic tensions and equally impressive atmosphere... Great film. To be watched by film fans as well as the students of American society.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars unforgettable - what a way to get a message accross, 6 Jan 2009
the style is not to everyone's taste, but it's nicely pitched........ however irritating the characters, they put you right there.....if it had been constantly broody it would have been flagwaving too much what was to come, whereas here it just soaks into you, and some of the humour even acts as a counterpoint. The 'urban ghetto' is pretty well captured.I wouldn't call it entertainment but it certainly leaves you affected.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Masterpiece of Urban Cinema, 13 Aug 2008
A Kid's Review
While some people find Spike Lee's filmic style a little too "in your face" at time, it is impossible to deny that he has extraordinary talent as both screenwriter and director after watching his best movie, Do The Right Thing (1989). With its cast completely on form, each person gives an electrifying performance, directing that enables us to empathise with every character and brillinatly juxtaposes ultra realism with surrealism, and a script that is both halarious and though provoking, Do The Right Thing is a brilliant movie, both entertaining and thought provoking, that should be viewed by everyone. Featuring on many top 100 film polls, Do The Right Thing is without a doubt one of the best movies of the 1980s and one of the best new york movies ever made.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Classic, 14 July 2008
By 
Gogol (England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
Forget the recently made film Crash which far from being a critical analysis of race and class in society this film, made over a decade before is the one you want to see.

Set in a predominantly black neighbourhood the story revolves around one main street on a hot summer where tempers reach disastrous conclusions. The film examines race and our own views on race from all perspectives, while Crash was condescending nonsense which did nothing but help the liberal left to sleep well at night knowing that amongst the working class (in the films case the Hispanic joiner, maid and police officer) There are still a large number prepared to tolerate what abuse we choose to heap upon them with a smile and a "Yes boss." Who don't feel anger as any other human does but rather accepts a role as the happy victim.

Spike Lee tears all that up and gives us a clear indication of the tensions that exist amongst working class people thrown together and competing for the same small space that they all live in. This film could have been set in London or Paris (Indeed the French film "La Haine" came out not long after) In the film we have the Italian Pizza restaurant, a restaurant that had been there for years when the area was predominantly Italian, where most Italians had moved out Sal had chosen to stay, accepting that things change and choosing to get on with his new neighbours and customers. While Sal chooses this role his 2 sons are somewhat different. One, a lad who has grown up amongst blacks and seeing no reason to accept the prejudice that his brother (a lad whose racism seems to be more a result of prejudice he suffers at the hands of his 'friends' for working in a shop in a black area).

Spike Lee is a young lad drifting along in life working in the Pizza shop while his sister, far more ambitious sees life as far more than the confines of her local neighbourhood. Other characters could be found in almost every working class neighbourhood in the world. The loudmouth bums who just choose to walk the streets, the drunk who bothers nobody but has his own story to tell, the old men sitting off with a few beers who think they are the owners of the community, the minority shop keeper whose lack of English sets him apart from the community he works in, the police who work the area whose prejudice is again based on class, of an area they see as 'gone to waste' through crime and poverty.

The film examines all angles, from the Korean shop-keeper to the white lad who has just moved into the neighbourhood. This is not a film where you will see one victim and one bully but rather a film where you will see working class people as they are. I recall reading once that the difference between working class and middle class people was that the working class if they have a prejudice will openly express it while the middle class will hide it behind polite snobbery.

Some will look at this film looking for a side to take (If you are white the Italians or black the black community) But I would argue rather look at this film for what it is. A insight to a working class community. Its also interesting to note that working class communities (in the UK at least) are considered the most multi racial of all communities. One only has to look at this film (black, white, Hispanic, Asian) To see that is clearly the same case in America. It rightly exposes that working class people will not sit back and be victims but will fight back sometimes with disastrous conclusions.

I cant recommend this film enough. Maybe after it we will all examine our own prejudices before its too late.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The movie that put Spike on the map, and deservedly so, 26 Jun 2007
By 
The first time I've seen Spike Lee's "Do the Right Thing" was at the theater and the movie refused to leave my mind for about several weeks. It just kept replaying itself constantly in my mind of the events and the turn a bouts of the story. The writing is so sharp and the movie is hilarious as well as the only movie to make Roger Ebert cry.

Deceptively open and simple in its presentation, this is one of the most complex and layered movies about human relationships that I have ever seen during that time. This movie is every bit as compound as its subject matter. I disagree with those who characterize the film as "preachy." Quite to the contrary, I think the genius of the film is precisely in the fact that Spike does not tell the viewer what to think - he just compels you to think.

Spike spends most of the movie setting up his characters and their situations, some are comedic, some are dramatic, and some are both. The acting is naturally great, with John Turturro, Danny Aiello, and Spike himself standing out as the best played and most interesting characters. The movie looks very much "of the 80's" as far as fashion and things like that go but that doesn't take any power away from the movie. But the biggest question people seem to have after they have watched this movie is about doing the right thing and whether or not Mookie did it. Spike always only says that he's never been asked that question by a person of color. However my feeling on the matter is this: Did Mookie do the right thing? No. Did Sal do the right thing? No. From the time that Radio Raheem comes into Sal's at the end, not one person does the right thing. Not Mookie, Sal, Radio, Buggin Out, the cops, or whoever. Everything horrible that happens could have been avoided if one person had done the right thing, and yet nobody does.

I think that's why the movie stuck with me. Most movies would show everyone (or just the "hero") doing the right thing and everything turning out happily, but that's not what usually happens in reality. Too often people give in to their worst instincts. In here we have New York explodes over a seemingly little incident because racial tensions are always just below the surface. This film is truly a work of art and out all Of the Spike Lee movies I've seen this is one of his finest. "Do the Right Thing" is one of the signatures of an American classic.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quite simply, a masterpiece., 14 Jan 2001
A masterful portrait of inner-city life in today's U.S. Sure, it simplifies some day to day aspects of life in the ghetto. Sure, it stereotypes, at times, but that's inevitable in a film that encompasses so many varied themes. And that climax. Wow!!! Talk about emotions running riot. In my opinion, far and away the best film to come out of America since Midnight Cowboy. By the way, when are we Brits going to have the opportunity to see another underrated masterpiece of Spike's, namely "Crooklyn"?
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 3 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Only search this product's reviews