The Order of Myths (2008)
Critic Consensus: More than a documentary about the oldest Mardi Gras celebration in the south, Order of Myths encompasses the eccentric characters of Mobile and the still-lingering racial tensions that surround them.
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Critic Reviews for The Order of Myths
A well-constructed documentary about a surprising remnant of segregation in the new South, The Order of Myths gracefully explores Mobile's Mardi Gras celebrations and profiles the young people playing at royalty at these ceremonies' hearts.
Trapped under the weight of hundreds of years of racial animosity and mistrust, with few clues as to how to work themselves free, the celebrants of the oldest Mardi Gras in the country take refuge in their traditions.
An invaluable portrait of us-and-them America, a smart, generous, poignant, quietly disturbing movie about secrecy and hospitality.
Less a vitriolic critique than a considerate, despairing depiction of the intractable sway exerted by long-held, unpleasant traditions.
Audience Reviews for The Order of Myths
A nice complementary film to Prom Night in Mississippi. Proof about segregation still forming a major part of the landscape in the southern U.S. The director should be credited with showing restraint on the preaching and just allowing the persons and actions flow.
[font=Century Gothic]"The Order of Myths" is a documentary focusing on the 2007 Mardi Gras celebrations in Mobile, Alabama which date back further than those in New Orleans. For each Mardi Gras, there is a white king and queen and a black king and queen, each with their accompanying courts.(The white monarchs are drawn from the wealthiest and oldest families of the city and this also doubles as a coming out into society. For example, an ancestor of the white queen's owned the last ship that brought slaves into Mobile.) Even the mystic societies that hold parades in the days leading up to Mardi Gras are almost entirely segregated.(The members of these societies wear masks and I could not help but wonder if there was any historical connection to the Ku Klux Klan. Especially considering that Mobile had a lynching as recent as 1981...) Since tradition and history are the apparent reasons for the continuing segregation, then most of these events could easily be written off as a particularly southern phenomenon. In general, the documentary does not probe very deep beneath the surface and does not have anything terribly profound to say concerning race relations.[/font] [font=Century Gothic]But there are signs of hope which include the election of the first black mayor in the city's history. One member of the white court is much more liberal and open to new ideas than others of her ilk. But come on, guys. This was 2007. What is taking so long? [/font]
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