Reading Response for 10/4

Spike Lee, “Journal Entries: Do the Right Thing” in On Writing

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40 thoughts on “Reading Response for 10/4

  1. Renee Lemire

    What backgrounds did Lee use to come up with his characters names? For example, how did he come up with Mookie, Raheem, and Sal?

    Are making those scene-by-scene index cards mandatory for him to do according to his film company he is working with?

    I enjoyed how Lee presented his thoughts in his entries. How he directed thoughts to the audience, but also talking to himself at the same time.

  2. Why does Lee want the audience to feel suffocated?

    Why does he make so many comments about other races?

    I think it’s good Lee is so passionate about his work.

  3. Spike says he wants all the characters to appear more than once and have a purpose. Why is this?

    Did Spike always want to write about such a big issue in America or has it become more real to him that he thought he needed to write about it?

    I like how Spike is writing about the world that he sees and isn’t so much making up a some random story.

  4. Did Lee choose Brooklyn because tensions are high there, or is there another underlying reason?
    Why did Spike Lee begin to plan the riot scene so early?
    I’ve always wondered what goes on before a movie’s casting and filming begins, so this was a very interesting read to me.
    -Becky B.

  5. Why is the author’s script highly focused on race relations?

    Why does heat play a dominant role in his journal entries?

    I didn’t realize how intricate and detail oriented planning for a movie is.

    Christie Gleason

  6. What does Lee mean when he says, “Mum’s da word”?

    Why is Spike Lee still a Knicks fan?

    Hearing how a director wrote the script for a movie and all the underlying messages and references involved was really interesting.

  7. Was it a typo on page 231 when it says “[JANUARY 1, 1987]?” Shouldn’t it be 1988?

    What is the point in having one brass knuckle read “L-O-V-E,” and the other read “H-A-T-E?” How is this “vicious?”

    My Grandparents grew up in the heart of Philadelphia and they know an Italian family who also refuses to move out of what has now become a predominately black neighborhood.

  8. Why does he talk about writing everyday?
    Why is there so much emphasis on race?
    The author surrounds his life around that work.

  9. Why does the author say the audience should be suffocating?
    What does the word “coda” mean on page 230?
    Spike Lee seems very involved in his script writing and it has become part of his everyday routine.

  10. Why is the author so focused on the different races shown in the movie?

    Is the process of writing a scrip always done this way? Or are there simpler ways to envision a movie and get your ideas across.

    It seems complicated to write the script for a movie, but at the same time it can be an amazing experience to place and create people the way you want them to be.

  11. Do you think Lee’s technique of keeping a journal helped him in progressing with his script, or could it be seen as a distraction/waste of time?
    Is it a contradiction that Lee wants to give his actors freedom after he spent pages writing about all the specifics for the movie, even down to what everyone will be wearing?
    I disliked how the author categorizes New York City as a city basically overflowing with racism. I think racism exists everywhere, yes NYC too, but NYC does a good job of showing pride in different ethnicities and cultures.

  12. Why would the author want his audience to feel uncomfortabley hot while watching his movie?

    How does Spike Lee chose the setting for the movie? Mainly, what specific elements did he look for?

    I agree with Spike Lee. Honestly, whenever I am hot I literally get into the worst mood ever. Body temperature as weird as this sounds can affect a lot of things.

  13. What does Lee mean when he says ” Puerto Rican Bright”?
    Why does Lee keep bring up the heat?
    I like how in the month of march he has the most journal entries while starting his first drafts. He seems like he’s procrastinating.

  14. Why does Lee make the Italian family the one the neighborhood dislikes?
    Why does Lee want to make the setting of the film narrow.
    I like how Lee made each character have a purpose in the story. It will make the story revolve in a full circle.
    Lydia

  15. What did critics say about his writing style?
    Why did Lee say that his style of direction is a controlled freedom?
    I like how Lee write down a timeline in his writing. It makes his story flow really well.
    -Michelle Wu

  16. Palmer Harper
    Why did the author want to make the film AFROCENTRIC bright?
    Why did he want to make a movie about the hottest day of the year?
    I like how he shows the escalation of a small incident turn into a huge conflict in the final scene.

  17. Why does Spike Lee talk race so much ?

    Each Character in Spike Lee serve a particular purpose .

    Spike Lee Writing really has define him today

  18. Why does Lee want to shoot the film by August so bad?

    What caused Lee to find out he loves making films?

    I liked when he talked about the different races and places because i can picture Brooklyn, New York.

  19. Why does Spike Lee insist on filming on the hottest day of the year?
    Why isn’t their more people like Spike Lee in the world?
    I find Lee’s sarcasm very fun.
    Zachary Anders

  20. For people who’ve actually seen a Spike Lee movie or one of his interview, does this help tomake his process better to understand?

    I wonder how many directors use similar methods to develop their work?

    I absolutely loved to see how the movie was developed with every journal entry and how every idea or concept came to be. It was like watching the growth of a child from adolescence to full adulthood.

  21. Based on the journal entries, how do the concepts of creating a first draft for a movie compare to that of creating a first draft for a paper?

    What would be the benefits of writing his ideas down on a legal pad instead of a normal pad of paper?

    I enjoyed the format of the journals, as well as the way the Spike Lee expressed his thoughts and opinions, because they kept me focused on the reading.

  22. As a society are we becoming more accepting of different races or are we getting worse?

    Would Lee want to make that kind of a movie today 25 years later?

    I think that Lee journal entries were interesting because you can see his process.
    Timmy Corrigan

  23. Andrew Miller

    Why didnt he give more insight in the middle of the process instead of mostly the beginning and end?

    Why are there a few sizable gaps in the frequency of the entries?

    It was a nice change reading someone’s detailed thoughts and passion on paper versus a story or advice.

  24. Why do you think such tiny incidents that happen can cause such big conflicts?

    Why does Lee constantly bring up the heat?

    It takes a lot to write a script for a movie. This was very interesting for me to read and see how that works.

  25. Is Spike Lee a supporter of Malcolm X over Martin Luther King Jr. or is this for the movie?
    Why was there a break in the journals from March to June? What happened to April and May?

    Spike Lee’s voice is very present throughout the journal entries and so is his culture through his descriptions and anecdotes.

  26. Why do you think Lee wants his characters to come up more than once?
    What is the significance of the heat?
    I hate Spike Lee… but mostly because I love Reggie Miller

  27. Why does it actually have to hot while filming?
    Does he want his movie to be really racial?

    I like his constant references to other movies.

  28. How long does it normally take to write a script?
    Does the time restraint hurt or help writing the script?
    I love the heat. I am usually in more of a grumpy mood if I’m cold.
    ~Kaitlyn Klingberg

  29. Did racism become intensified in the film culture when the film was released?
    How did the movie turn out?
    I like how he used other media sources as inspiration for different parts of his story line.

  30. why does spike lee film in August?

    why is everything about race?

    I never thought about how much work and time is invested in making a movie

  31. Why did spike lee choose to write on this subject in the first place?

    What would have happened had the African-American character been more representative of Martin Luther King, rather than Malcolm X?

    I thought how Spike Lee had this idea the whole time he was writing and he knew that definitely, for sure, there was going to be a huge riot.

  32. Why does Spike Lee choose to set the film in Brooklyn?

    Why does Lee want the script to be “circular”, how could this grasp the viewer’s attention?

    I thought it was interesting how he always keeps the viewer in mind when writing a film. He is not only thinking about what he wants to write, but also what the viewer wants to see on the big screen.

  33. Why did the author want it to be on the hottest day of the year and protray he haracters as so sweaty?

    What do you think the heat symbolized?

    I think that the heat symbolized the rage and anger in the characters.

  34. What did Spike Lee want people to get out of watching his movie?

    Besides the heat, what other aspects influenced the characters’ moods?

    I like how Lee put so much thought into what his characters did and said.

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