Do the Right Thing

Saturday, July 22 - Thursday, August 3, 2023

Nominated for two Academy Awards® including Best Original Screenplay, DO THE RIGHT THING, written, directed and produced by Spike Lee, is set on one Bed-Stuy block at the height of a sweltering summer in the late 1980s. Over the course of a single day, the casual interactions of the block’s unforgettable cast of multi-racial characters— including Mookie (Lee), Sal (Danny Aiello), Da Mayor (Ossie Davis), Mother Sister (Ruby Dee), Mister Señor Love Daddy (Samuel L. Jackson), Tina (Rosie Perez), Buggin Out (Giancarlo Esposito) and Pino (John Turturro)—escalate into heated confrontations as tensions rise along racial fault lines and ultimately explode into violence. Punctuated by the anthemic refrain of Public Enemy’s “Fight the Power,” Lee’s 1989 masterpiece confirmed him as a filmmaker of peerless vision and passionate social engagement. A cultural lightning rod and a landmark in American cinema, DO THE RIGHT THING is as politically and emotionally charged and as relevant today as when it first hit the big screen.

Screening as part of our series When the Lights Go Down: The Sex Scene

See a throuple of screenings in this series and save with a Ménage à Trois Pack!



  • Country USA
  • Year 1989
  • Running Time 126 minutes
  • Format DCP
  • Distributor Universal
  • Director Spike Lee
  • Writer Spike Lee
  • Editor Barry Alexander Brown
  • Cinematographer Ernest R. Dickerson
  • Cast Danny Aiello, Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee, Richard Edson, Giancarlo Esposito, Spike Lee, John Turturro, Samuel L. Jackson, Rosie Perez

IFC Center does not generally provide advisories about subject matter or potentially triggering content in films, as sensitivities vary from person to person. In addition to the synopses, trailers and other links on our website, further information about content and age-appropriateness for specific films can be found on Common Sense Media, IMDb and as well as through general internet searches.