Video Release: January 9, 2007
Theatrical Release: 1989
Rating: R (MPAA)
Studio: Universal Studios Home Video
- Dolby Surround
- Runtime: 120 minutes
- NTSC (Canada and USA)
- Wide Screen
- Released in French
Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn. Disc jockey Mr. Se±or Love Daddy wakes his morning listeners with soulful rhythms and prepares them for the sweltering heat of the summer's day. The nearby eatery and hangout is Sal's Famous Pizzeria. Young locals Buggin' Out, Radio Raheem and pizza delivery-boy Mookie view Sal's as a symbol of the successful economic and cultural assimilation of Italian-Americans and as an oppressive economic force that profits at their expense. Existing racial tensions between merchant and community are exacerbated when Sal refuses to place pictures of prominent African-Americans on his shop's "Wall of Fame." But things really heat up after Sal declares he'll not only forgo the pictures, he'll also restrict rap music. When Radio Raheem and Buggin' Out confront Sal on his exclusionism, tempers fly and tragedy ensues.
This dramatic comedy follows the course of a single hot day on a Bedford-Stuyvesant street, where tempers heat up and racial tensions build to explosive levels. Academy Award Nominations: 2, including Best (Original) Screenplay, Best Supporting Actor--Danny Aiello.
Producer-director-screenwriter and actor Spike Lee was born in Atlanta, Georgia in 1956. Raised in Brooklyn by a Black middle class family, Lee went on to become a third generation alumnus of Morehouse College, one of the few historically Black colleges in the U.S.
After receiving a B.A. in Communication from Morehouse, Lee attended New York University's Institute of Film and Television where he received his M.F.A. Though he made films in his teens, Lee didn't appear on the commercial movie scene until 1986, but he quickly established himself as a monumental talent and an influential filmmaker.
Lee went on to win critical acclaim for "She's Gotta Have It" (1986), the film which marked his commercial debut. Between film projects the director worked on videos and directed Nike "Air Jordan" commercials. He occasionally teaches at Harvard University.
Lee will always be respected for his cinematic accomplishments but perhaps more importantly, he will be remembered as the young Black independent filmmaker responsible for the revival of Black Cinema in the 1990s. Since his 1986 box-office success with "She's Gotta Have It," a new generation of Black filmmakers was suddenly considered commercially viable by Hollywood studios.