22 user 62 critic

Trouble the Water (2008)

Unrated | | Documentary | 5 December 2008 (UK)
2:00 | Trailer

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A redemptive tale of an aspiring rap artist surviving failed levees and her own troubled past and seizing a chance for a new beginning.


Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 7 wins & 13 nominations. See more awards »





Credited cast:
Michael Brown ... Himself (archive footage)
... Himself (archive footage)
... Herself - Reporter (archive footage)
Ray Nagin ... Himself (archive footage)
Brian Nobles ... Himself
Wink Rivers ... Himself
Kimberly Rivers Roberts ... Herself
... Himself
Larry Sims ... Himself - Resident
Shepard Smith ... Himself (voice) (archive sound)


A redemptive tale of an aspiring rap artist surviving failed levees and her own troubled past and seizing a chance for a new beginning.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis




Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:

Official site



Release Date:

5 December 2008 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

As Águas de Katrina  »

Filming Locations:



Box Office


$900,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$28,606, 22 August 2008, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$519,981, 5 April 2009
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


elderly woman: The water is steady rising in the attic ma'am and I'm gonna drown in the attic.
9/11 dispatcher: Can you break a hole in the attic?
elderly woman: I tried. I broke a chair for it. I cannot pry this wood off this attic ma'am.
9/11 dispatcher: The police are not coming out until the weather conditions get better.
elderly woman: [long pause] So I'm gonna die.
[long pause]
elderly woman: Hello?
9/11 dispatcher: Yes.
elderly woman: I can't get out.
See more »


Featured in Treme: Promised Land (2012) See more »


Hurricane Waters
Performed by Citizen Cope
See more »

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User Reviews

life washed away
6 September 2011 | by See all my reviews

Everyone saw footage of Hurricane Katrina on the news. Spike Lee's documentary "When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts" dealt extensively with the storm and the lack of response. "Trouble the Water" consists mostly of camcorder footage shot by New Orleans resident Kimberly Roberts before during and after the storm. Partly about the hurricane, the documentary also poses the question of what America is supposed to be all about if it lets this happen to thousands of people, most of them poor and black.

Hurricane Katrina, like the September 11 attacks (whose tenth anniversary is in a few days), is something that should always be remembered, maybe more so. It showed how detached the government had become from its most vulnerable citizens. The collapse of the levees and subsequent flooding of the Lower Ninth Ward became an excuse to dismantle New Orleans's public school system and replace it with vouchers. The documentary is even more relevant now, after Louisiana got a second strike in the form of the Deepwater Horizon spill.

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