Students write about "The Whole Gritty City"

January 25, 2014

One of our favorite parts of premiering “The Whole Gritty City” in The New Orleans Film Festival was doing free screenings for public school audiences (thank you Skye Macdonald!). The group of students from McMain High School wrote essays the day after they viewed the film. Here are some excerpts.

 “The Whole Gritty City was a very eye-opening experience. It will forever change the way I look at things. To the three teenagers that opened up enough for it to be real, I say thank you! I felt like I was going through your day to day lives with you. The way of music made me feel uplifted and proud to be from New Orleans...To me it was not a documentary, it was emotional eye catching heartfelt hope in the whole gritty city." 

“I like how the film didn’t just talk about the violence and other conflicts the people may go through in their neighborhood, but it gave the children a voice....I also liked how the competition wasn’t just between the bands for parade season, but the competition of rising above all the negativity in their life, and becoming a better person. It was better than a big box cinema. It was life."

“The movie was full of emotion. One character that stood out to me most was Bear. He was so young and wise for his age. It amazed me how he committed himself to his music.”

 “The gritty city showed that kids with less money can actually be something in life. This made the film very emotional which gets a crowd’s attention."

“It was very funny in the beginning but at the end it started to get very sad. I almost started to cry but I try my hardest not to cry...My favorite character was Bear. I just loved me some Bear in the film. He look a cool and funny kid.”

“I also like the way the different families were put together to form one.”

 “As soon as the production started I couldn’t turn my head. The music was on point with the movie and it got me in my feelings and got my undivided attention.”

“I went through some of the hard stuff those same people went through after the storm. I liked how it showed the stuff going on in those kids’ neighborhood..”

“The movie The Gritty City was different from movies I’ve watched. The people were real, their stories were real, and there was no acting involved. All of their stories really touched my heart. I cried a little. Most movies are about not too many real things and also they are never about New Orleans band struggles...I want to thank you for giving me opportunities of seeing the movie because it made me take a second look on life.”