Smile Politely

Do the Right Thing with communication conversation Monday at the Art

Per a press release from The Art Theater Co-op:

The Art Theater Co-op has partnered with Restorative CU and other community organizations for a special 25th anniversary screening of Do the Right Thing, Spike Lee’s classic film of racial & social tension in Brooklyn. The event will occur on Monday, September 15 at 7:30PM at the Art Theater Co-op in downtown Champaign.
After the screening of Spike Lee’s incendiary & acclaimed film, there will be a short panel discussion as well as open conversation with the audience about the meaning of the film as it relates to questions of race, violence, and justice in contemporary society.

Panelists include:
• (Facilitator) Mikhail Lyubansky, Restorative CU & UI Department of Psychology, who teaches Do the Right Thing as part of his annual course on Psychology of Race & Ethnicity. 
• Anthony Cobb, Chief of Police, City of Champaign.
• Sundiata Cha-Jua, UI Department of History & African-American Studies.
• Janice Marie Collins, UI Department of Journalism and Institute of Communication Research.
• Meadow Jones, UI Art Education.

“Given this year’s fatal shootings in Ferguson, St. Louis, NYC, & elsewhere, there is no more relevant film to spark discussion about what we talk about when we say ‘justice,’” said Austin McCann, general manager & programmer of the Art.  “Considering the way the film presents many contradictory viewpoints, it allows us to see some of the pitfalls and opportunities for addressing issues of power in society, especially as it relates to law enforcement & communities of color.”

In Spike Lee’s landmark Brooklyn classic, the streets of Bed-Stuy boil and tensions run high on the hottest day of the year. Loaded with an amazing supporting cast (including Samuel L. Jackson, John Turturro, and Rosie Perez) and music by Public Enemy, Do the Right Thing swings effortlessly from satire to social commentary, and 25 years after its controversial release it remains an important cultural touchstone for a very different Brooklyn.

In the film, Spike Lee dives into a maelstrom of racial & social strife on one block in Brooklyn on the hottest day of the year. The film focuses on a wild diversity of characters and businesses, including a radio station helmed by Samuel L. Jackson, a convenience store owned by a Korean couple, and most centrally, Sal’s Pizzeria, run by Sal (Danny Aiello) and his two sons (John Turturro and Richard Edson). Much of the film focuses on Sal’s employee Mookie (Spike Lee), who wants to get paid but doesn’t have ambition. The film also introduces us to Mookie’s sister Jade (Joie Lee), who encourages Mookie to take his responsibiolities more seriously, and Mookie’s girlfriend Tina (Rosie Perez). We also meet Radio Raheem (Bill Nunn), who prefers blasting Public Enemy on his boombox to speaking, and additional characters. As the drama between these characters escalates, and characters becoming divided by boundaries of race & class, the movie moves towards its intense conclusion.

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