Frank says that Monty got what was coming to him for being a drug dealer. Monty was ruining lives by what he was doing and he deserves to go to jail. Any viewer aware of the terrorists' stated goals in flying planes into the Twin Towers is aware that the terrorists sought to strike back at a nation and an economic system that they believed caused strife in other parts of the world. The viewer cannot help but wonder if Lee is tying Monty and his drug dealing to the United States and its foreign policy. Is Lee suggesting that, just like Monty, the United States got what it deserved?
It is a disturbing moment in the film primarily because it seems forced. Yet the implication of Lee's justification of the image and the dialogue seems inescapable. Scott, in his review, argues that the aftermath of 9/11 is "not so much the topic of Mr. Lee's movie as an important element of its atmosphere, at times an obtrusive one." More than that, however, it seems an inappropriate one, even if the viewer accepts the premise suggested above, that Lee intended to equate Monty's drug dealing with American foreign policy. Essentially, the issue of 9/11 merely seems too "big" to serve merely as a backdrop for a story that is not ultimately about 9/11. Nonetheless, Lee's purpose might only have been to suggest that 9/11 so changed New York that one cannot use the city as a backdrop without addressing the attacks.
There is another scene in the 25th Hour that most reviewers seemed to be unable to ignore. This is the scene in the bathroom, where Monty sees "fuck you" scribbled on the mirror and then watches as his reflection goes on a diatribe against everything that essentially makes New York New York. Most notably, the diatribe rails against the Sikhs, and the Pakistanis, and the Koreans, and the "brothers," and the rich ladies on Park Avenue who get too much plastic surgery. One reviewer called this "Lee's ostentatious setpiece [of] Norton's howl of non-PC...
25th Hour and Do the Right Thing by Spike Lee. (1969, December 31). In LotsofEssays.com. Retrieved 22:59, January 30, 2015, from http://www.collegetermpapers.com/viewpaper/1303655575.html