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79

Generally favorable reviews - based on 12 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: The first Mardi Gras in America was celebrated in Mobile, Alabama in 1703. In 2008, it is still racially segregated. A fascinating investigation into our nation's history and traditions, this acclaimed, award-winning documentary illuminates the complexities of race relations in 21st century America. [The Cinema Guild] Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 12
  2. Negative: 0 out of 12
  1. Eschewing voice-over or any obvious trace of an on-screen or off-screen presence, she (Brown) lets her images, a little text and other people do the talking for her. Her quiet has its own force.
  2. Reviewed by: Robert Abele
    90
    An invaluable portrait of us-and-them America, a smart, generous, poignant, quietly disturbing movie about secrecy and hospitality, and how easy it is for a tradition of separateness to flourish when the stakes are as deceptively frivolous as an eye-popping yearly party.
  3. 90
    Smartly edited, utterly engrossing, and as intelligent an examination of American race relations as I've seen.
  4. Reviewed by: Josh Rosenblatt
    78
    "They have their Mardi Gras; we have ours," the explanation goes on both sides, but everyone seems to realize it's just a rationalization aimed at covering over Mobile's docile perpetuation of segregation.
  5. 70
    Moving and surprising documentary.
  6. Reviewed by: John Anderson
    60
    Order of Myths looks good, and its characters are memorable. It's important to know that the "traditions" extolled by both sides of Mobile involve keeping people apart. But it's not clear at all that Brown is bringing them together.

See all 12 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
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