Who doesn’t know about Spike Lee? He is one of the topmost directors of America. Once upon a time, the term ‘Spike Lee Joint’ meant a challenge to the entire cinema world. Not just his movies are great but the characters he creates are awesome and stay with the audience for a long long time. So, let’s discuss the 8 most iconic Spike Lee characters in the movie world.
1. Mookie – Do The Right Thing
Mookie from Do The Right Thing is portrayed as a chill boy with a Brooklyn Dodgers jersey, and pizza box in his hand. Played by Spike Lee himself, Mookie is a pizza delivery boy who is lazy and doesn’t ever feel like doing his job. He thinks delivering pizza to people is a lame job and obviously, this behavior annoys his boss. Apparently, something tragic happens to his friend at the hand of the police which makes him choose a different way and enter into a different world. The movie and the character leaves everyone in a self debate whether he did the right thing or not.
2. Ron Stallworth – BlacKkKlansman
The character of Ron Stallworth is inspired by a real-life character. John David Washington, who is soon going to star in Christopher Nolan’s Tenet, plays the role of a black police officer who pretends to be a white person to infiltrate the KKK. Adam Driver’s character, played by Flip Zimmerman, is the one who stood in for Stallworth while attending Klan meetings. Stallworth initially wrestled with the idea of being a black police officer in the first place. He even lied to his girlfriend about what he did. Because of his internal complexity, Ron Stallworth is an iconic character.
3. Jacob Elinsky – 25th Hour
Directed by late Phillip Seymour Hoffman, 25th Hour portrays Jacob Elinsky as a high school teacher who falls in love with his 17-year-old student. He does not hide it and kisses her at a club. Despite not being the protagonist of the movie, his weird character, and awkward encounters makes him unforgettable.
4. Jake Shuttlesworth – He Got Game
He Got Game is a quite underrated movie nowadays. Denzel Washington plays the role of Jake Shuttlesworth who is a convict for murdering his wife. He tries to connect with his son who is a top-ranked basketball player to convince him to play for the state governor’s alma mater so that he can get his sentence reduced. Jake’s character is both domineering and introspective. He is also shown as taking care of a woman. He is a complex person and that’s why he is an impressive one.
5. Nola Darling – She’s Gotta Have It
Nola Darling played by Tracy Camilla Johns is a bold black woman who dates 3 men at the same time and is very open about it. So when her 3 suitors meet and ask her to choose one, she refuses to do so. But then, she gets compromised by one of her suitors. Though Spike Lee says that he regrets this decision, still seeing a liberated black woman in 1986 is good.
6. ‘Gator’ Purify – Jungle Fever
Gator is such a powerful character in Jungle Fever that even after being a B character you may confuse him as an A character. Gator is shown as a crack addict and spent all his money on it. Nobody lends him money because of his addiction. The story moves on as he goes to his parents and tears the house apart for money and gets shot by his own father. The character feels so real and is Samuel L. Jackson’s greatest performance ever.
7. Troy – Crooklyn
Spike Lee is often accused of not writing strong female characters but Troy is a big example that he does. Troy is a little girl who grows up fast when her mother detects cancer. Even before the diagnosis, she is shown as a very mature and wise girl beyond her years. Troy is also one of the most complex characters by Spike and thus deserves a place in the list.
8. Malcolm X – Malcolm X
Denzel Washington playing Malcolm X is an amazing and intricate character. And he does justice to the character by playing a fantastic role. Though the original director of Malcolm X was Norman Jewison but Spike Lee’s direction is so good and satisfactory.
Daisy Martin is an avid technical blogger, a magazine contributor, a publisher of guides at mcafee.com/activate and a professional cyber security analyst. Through her writing, she aims to educate people about the dangers and threats lurking in the digital world .