Do the Right Thing 4K UHD Is the Pick of the Week

What else can be said about Do the Right Thing, iconic filmmaker Spike Lee’s 1989 classic? It remains one of the most important, controversial, and discussed films ever made. Due to the recent wave of unfortunate police brutality towards black people, and the Black Lives Movement, it is also incredibly relevant.

The timeless and incendiary story takes place in a neighborhood in Brooklyn, New York during a massive heat wave. As the heat gets hotter, so does the racial tension that the characters place on each other, especially with Sal’s Famous, a popular Italian pizzeria where Mookie (Lee) works at, one that happens to located in the middle of the predominately black community. When Buggin’ Out (Giancarlo Esposito), a very passionate radical, sees that there are no “brothers” (famous black men in history, such as MLK Jr., Malcolm X, etc.) on the pizzeria’s Wall of Fame, the anger and rage escalates to a boiling point, in which the day ends in destruction and catastrophe for everyone involved.

Despite some rough violence that takes place in the end, which leads to its still head-scratching conclusion and some mixed attitudes/messages, Do the Right Thing continues to be an essential piece of popular culture and one of the greatest motion pictures of all-time. It is also a predicted representation of how far we’ve come as a society, but how much, much more we still have to go.

Marking 32 years since the film caused a sensation, one that continues to linger on in film culture (and culture in general), it makes its 4K debut this week. Although not as stacked as the recent Criterion re-release, it still has enough special features to keep you informed on the film’s history. They include an introduction by Lee; deleted and extended scenes; behind the scenes footage; two commentaries: the first with Lee, cinematographer Ernest Dickerson, production designer Wynn Thomas, and Joie Lee (Spike’s sister), the other: a 20th anniversary commentary with Lee; storyboard gallery of the Riots sequence; interview with editor Barry Brown, and more.

If you don’t have the release from Criterion, but happen to have a 4K player, then I think this combo pack is a must-have, especially for those who are willing to have an open perspective on Lee and his filmmaking genius.

Other releases:

Let Him Go: Diane Lane and Kevin Costner star in the compelling story of a retired sheriff and his wife, devastated over the loss of their son, set out to find and bring their long-lost grandson home, by any means necessary.

Host: A recent horror smash about six friends who hire a medium to conduct an online seance during lockdown. They get more than they bargained for when creepy things start happening.

Horror Noire: A History of Black Horror: A Shudder Original documentary that traces the untold story of Black Hollywood through their passion and connection with the horror genre.

A Man Called Adam (Kino): Sammy Davis Jr. stars in this ’60s curosity as a famous jazz trumpeter who struggles with the problems with everyday life after a devastating tragedy. The late, great Cicely Tyson also stars as the woman who tries to help him brave through it all.


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