When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts

Spike Lee

When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts
Directed by: Spike Lee
(HBO Home Video)
Spike Lee is primarily known for his groundbreaking work dealing with racial and social issues in the US. With a great deal of visionary films to his credit, his work as a documentary filmmaker is often overlooked. Like the haunting and disturbing 4 Little Girls, When the Levees Broke is an astounding film. Lee builds an all-encompassing doc that covers the build-up to the storm and the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina with cunning style and vision. Most people were glued to their sets during the crisis, but Lee goes many steps further than CNN—he interviews families, government officials, medical personnel and celebrated New Orleans jazz musicians. At the heart of the matter is the question of race relations and the government’s possible, but most probable, bias in dealing with the situation. The four acts are roughly an hour each and deal with a specific issue or event. When originally aired on HBO it was shown in two-hour segments over two nights, culminating in 256 minutes, making this a long-winded documentary. But regardless of length, this is an important film that critiques social and political relations in the most powerful country in the world and stands as a chronicle of how the US government let its citizens down when they needed it the most.
—Trevor MacLaren 

Support The Coast

At a time when the city needs local coverage more than ever, we’re asking for your help to support independent journalism. We are committed as always to providing free access to readers, particularly as we confront the impact of COVID-19 in Halifax and beyond.

Read more about the work we do here, or consider making a donation. Thank you for your support!

Comments (0)

Add a comment

Add a Comment

Get more Halifax

The Coast Daily email newsletter is your extra dose of the city Monday through Friday. Sign up and go deep on Halifax!

Recent Comments