It’s been 23 years since Crooklyn dropped in theaters and it will forever be a classic. The Spike Lee directed feature debuted in 1994, peaking at number three in the box office. How? Well, Crooklyn is probably as real as life gets for African American families. For starters, the plot is set in Bed-Stuy during the Summer time. Everyone knows how amazingly crazy Brooklyn summers can be, so image it in 1973.
The movie showed the world things that weren’t showed in films at the time from neighborhood junkies, sibling rivalries, stealing from the corner store, crazy relatives, to the loss of loved ones. It is a classic because of these elements of a true American lower-middle class family.
The film cast includes Alfre Woodard, Delroy Lindo, and Zelda Harris as the leading actress. Crooklyn is said to have been inspired by Spike Lee’s family. He also wrote, directed, and acted in the feature himself.
A good side note about the feature is the portrayal of friendship that the film shows. Throughout the film the children are seen hanging out with their loyal neighborhood crew. Everyone had that neighborhood group of friends growing up. Before the internet became a thing, our source of entertainment back then were bikes, snowcones, and the homies up the block. The Carmichael kids were no exception.
Thank you Spike, for your dedication to urban culture by way of Crooklyn.