If God Is Willing and da Creek Don't Rise

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If God Is Willing and da Creek Don't Rise
If God Is Willing and da Creek Don't Rise.jpg
Directed bySpike Lee
Theme music composerTerence Blanchard
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
Producer(s)Spike Lee
Samuel D. Pollard
CinematographyCliff Charles
Editor(s)Geeta Gandbhir
Running time255 minutes
Production company(s)40 Acres and a Mule Filmworks
Original networkHBO
Original release
  • August 23, 2010 (2010-08-23)

If God Is Willing and da Creek Don't Rise is a 2010 documentary film directed by Spike Lee, as a follow-up to his 2006 HBO documentary film, When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts. The film looks into the proceeding years since Hurricane Katrina struck the New Orleans and Gulf Coast region, and also focuses on the 2010 BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and its effect on the men and women who work along the shores of the gulf. Many of the participants in Levees were also featured in this documentary.

It won a Peabody Award in 2010 "for ambitiously chronicling one of the largest disasters in American history, interrogating the well-known narratives and investigating other stories that could have easily fallen through the cracks."[1]


Featured in the documentary are stories about New Orleans' rebuilding efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, including the shuttering and demolition of four public housing projects in the city. The documentary also goes into the story of how the Federal Bureau of Investigation looked into allegations of brutality and cover-ups within the New Orleans Police Department.

Another element in the documentary was the NFL's New Orleans Saints, a team long known for losing for the better half of its 43-year history, as they defeated New Orleans native Peyton Manning and his Indianapolis Colts in Super Bowl XLIV, and seeing the region celebrating the victory which took place days prior to the annual Mardi Gras celebration.

Also included were a federal court ruling in February 2009 that held the United States Army Corps of Engineers responsible for poor maintenance of the Mississippi River – Gulf Outlet Canal, which caused the flooding of New Orleans and its surrounding communities during Hurricane Katrina. Some native New Orleanians who re-located to the Houston area post-Katrina were also interviewed, and each tells the story about their lives in the years since the hurricane. Ray Nagin and Mitch Landrieu, the former and current mayors of New Orleans respectively, were also interviewed, specifically about the portion of the documentary which saw Nagin unseated as mayor after eight years, due to his being ineligible to run for a third term.


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