Movie Reviews

DVD Review: “Trouble the Water”

(Focus Features. 2009. 1 hour, 36 minutes. Color. Widescreen. Unrated. Directed by Carl Deal and Tia Lessin.) Music by Davidge/Del Naja.

A ground-level documentary of a catastrophic event, Trouble the Water follows aspiring rapper Kim and her husband Steve as they survive and try to escape the disaster that was Hurricane Katrina. I remember seeing the news coverage as the levees failed and watching in horror as the whole situation unfolded, but this documentary gives an intensely personal view of this tragedy. Much of the footage in the first half of the film was taken by Kim using a camcorder, capturing the storm and subsequent flood. It is fascinating to watch these people ride out the story and see how tragedy can bring people together. Deal and Lessin do a good job of letting Kim and Steve tell their story while seasoning it with excerpts from the local and national media. These snippets frame with the events onscreen and go a long way in demonstrating how the ball was dropped completely by every level of government involved, from the unprepared city leadership, to the overwhelmed state government and the sluggish response from FEMA (“You’re doing a heckuva job, Brownie!”). Special features include deleted and extended scenes and featurettes chronicling the film’s presence at the 2008 Democratic National Convention and conversations with the directors, subjects, film critic Richard Roeper and executive producer Danny Glover. A story of strength and perseverance that needs to be seen to be believed.

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Jared Counts

Digital Technology Manager

Jared Counts moved to Houston in 1995, survived high school and college, and graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Houston with a degree in Communications (Media Production) and a minor in Film Studies. After being hired part-time at KUHF Radio in early 2003, he proceeded to bounce between...

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