Segments in this Video

Hurricane Katrina Aftermath (04:07)


A woman offers thanks in prayer for surviving the flood. View footage of ruined neighborhoods, evacuated New Orleans residents, and people mourning their loved ones.

New Orleans' Musical Spirit (01:58)

The Hot 8 Brass Band plays for tips in New York City in October 2005. Members discuss regrouping after the storm.

African-American Dispersal (03:29)

New Orleans evacuees are sent to neighboring states. Many are unable to contact their families due to ongoing telecommunication failures. Houston receives 150,000 people, increasing racial tension and crime reports.

Abandoned by Government (02:39)

New Orleans evacuees express frustration at being sent to other states. Kanye West accuses Bush of not caring about African-Americans on an NBC program.

Vice Presidential Photo-Op (02:50)

Gulfport, Mississippi residents encounter Dick Cheney holding a press conference in their ruined neighborhood and confront him about the government's slow response to the disaster.

Forgotten New Orleans (03:01)

President Bush finally makes an appearance, two weeks after the storm. Residents express anger at his delayed response and at FEMA's incompetence.

Post-Disaster Limbo (02:27)

In November 2005, FEMA announces it can no longer cover evacuee hotel expenses. New Orleans residents discuss the challenges in getting their lives back. Many spend the holidays apart from family members that are scattered throughout the U.S.

Demoralizing Labels (03:17)

News anchors refer to New Orleans evacuees as refugees— with negative psychological effects. Sharpton clarifies that they are taxpaying American citizens. While touring the Houston Astrodome, Barbara Bush suggests they are better off than before the storm.

Charity vs. Social Mobility (04:04)

The U.S. government considers the people of New Orleans a low priority. Many evacuees are discovering better opportunities in other states and deciding not to return to their hometown.

Increased Crime (02:56)

Louisiana state representative Karen Carter discusses the lack of incentives to bring evacuees home. Prior to the disaster, New Orleans was an impoverished city with an African-American majority. Mayor Ray Nagin brings in additional state police to address new violence.

Broken Education System (03:05)

Crime among young African-American men is related to the New Orleans public school dropout rate. State funding depends on student numbers, which will remain low until neighborhoods are rebuilt and families can return home.

New Orleans' Roots (03:21)

The city's history and identity arise from African-American suffering and creativity. Experts cite the Mardi Gras Indians as an example of racial and cultural integration.

Congo Square (03:58)

Musicians talk about the New Orleans location where jazz was born. It was the only place where slaves could play African music and dance. Hear how jazz funerals combine Christian and African traditions.

Jazz Funeral for New Orleans (02:20)

Terence Blanchard plays a melody and reflects on the shock of returning to his hometown. Residents talk about flood devastation.

Returning to a Devastated Home (03:10)

Blanchard accompanies his grandmother to her house in New Orleans. She is shocked by the flood damage.

Despair (02:18)

New Orleans residents talk about returning home to devastation. Many want to rebuild their lives, but do not know where to begin.

Psychological Toll (05:10)

Many New Orleans residents are suffering from PTSD after losing loved ones in the flood. Suicide rates have increased and premature deaths have been linked to stressful conditions during the aftermath.

Mourning (04:07)

A former New Orleans resident talks about losing her daughter in the flood. She blames the city for her loss, and holds the funeral in another town.

Credits: When the Levees Broke: Part 4 (01:19)

Credits: When the Levees Broke: Part 4

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When the Levees Broke: Part 4

Part of the Series : When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts
DVD (Chaptered) Price: $199.95
DVD + 3-Year Streaming Price: $299.93
3-Year Streaming Price: $199.95



One year after Hurricane Katrina decimated New Orleans, director Spike Lee presents a four-hour, four-part chronicle recounting, through words and images, one of our country’s most profound natural disasters. In addition to revisiting the hours leading up to the arrival of Katrina, a Category 5 hurricane before it hit the coast of Louisiana, When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts tells the personal stories of those who lived to tell about it, at the same time exploring the underbelly of a nation where the divide along race and class lines has never been more pronounced. An HBO Production. 

Length: 61 minutes

Item#: FMK115044

Copyright date: ©2006

Closed Captioned

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Only available in USA and Canada.