When The Levees Broke: The Walking Dead

The featured image for this blog post does not come from WTLBbut rather from the widely popular television show The Walking Dead. Although I am bringing a fictional, post-apocalyptic series into my consideration of Lee’s documentary, I cannot help but notice the striking similarities between this iconic image and some of the opening and concluding footage of WTLBContinue reading “When The Levees Broke: The Walking Dead”

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When the Levees Broke: Dialing Zero

Although I know that the Gulf Coast represents a hotspot for hurricanes and other tropical storms, I did not have any knowledge of Hurricane Betsy in 1965. Although many of the older interviewees detailed their memories of this natural disaster as it ravaged the levees of New Orleans over 50 years ago, I found it striking that the younger generation of subjects chose to reference it with similar detail. Continue reading “When the Levees Broke: Dialing Zero”

When The Levees Broke: Zoom Accents

“Zoom accents” is another term I have come up with to frame Lee’s acute utilization of camera mechanics. Typically, talking head interviews require a static camera that is trained on the subject from a fixed distance — whether that be a medium shot or up close and personal. Much like his early documentary Four Little Girls, Lee allows the intimate moments with his interviewees to explode from the screen with an application of the zoom technique. Continue reading “When The Levees Broke: Zoom Accents”

When The Levees Broke: Off-Beat

Early on in WTLB (I’m sticking with this acronym from now on), it became clear that the combination of talking-head interviews and found footage would represent the aesthetic crux of the documentary. Yet, with each passing interview, I noticed Lee’s particular attention to primary colors. Continue reading “When The Levees Broke: Off-Beat”

When The Levees Broke: Cast Out

When the levees broke, I was twelve-years old and on my way to junior boarding school. Coming from the Springfield public school system, I was never challenged with the specificity of my biracial identity. In that system, I was just another dark face. Continue reading “When The Levees Broke: Cast Out”

When The Levees Broke: A Blog Series

Preface: This will be one of several blog posts that concern our screening of When the Levees Broke. Due to this film’s lengthy runtime and countless topics of discussion, I believe this serial response to be the most fitting way to frame my response.  Continue reading “When The Levees Broke: A Blog Series”