a kind of soulfulness in the community, and a certain type of style,
and everybody loved him.”
“The sights and sounds
of the Black Indians—the effusion of colorful feathers, the
intricacy of the beaded patches, the chants driven by percussion,
and the ritual dancing—are wonderful to behold and inevitably
absorb our attention: it’s a feast for the senses. But the
internal dynamics within the tribes—the bids for power, respect,
and recognition that are integral to what the Indians are about—has
never been adequately addressed until now. In this work, Katzman
has penetrated to the core of the Mardi Gras Indian experience and
delivers a powerful examination of how the seemingly parochial event
can encompass themes, that are, in fact, universal.”
––Bruce Rayburn, Head Curator, Tulane University, Hogan
"This one amazing
film confirms indubitably and absolutely the overriding importance
of New Orleans for the culture of the United States. A delight,
a sweet beauty, and a revelation of how soul makes art."
––James Hillman ,author of The Myth of Analysis, The Dream and the Underworld, The Soul's Code, and The Force of Character.
"As we approach Tribeca Film Festival's
final weekend, it's a good time to catch up on the miscellaneous
highlights you might have missed. You won't, for instance, want
to let the profound "Tootie's LastSuit" (7:45 p.m., AMC 34th Street) pass you by. Few outside
of Louisiana know the name Allison (Tootie) Montana, but the New
Orleans residents, the Mardi Gras Indian chief was a revered icon.
While the film is, in part, a compassionate personal portrait, it's
also much more, in its complex examination of the racial, ethnic
and cultural histories that the city cannot, for better and worse,
put behind it."
––Tribeca Film Festival Top Picks, Elizabeth Weitzman,
New York Daily News,
Friday May 4, 2007
"Tootie's Last Suit,"
a gripping documentary about Mardi Gras Indian Tootie Montana. Shot
pre- and post-Katrina by New York/New Orleans filmmaker Lisa Katzman,
"Tootie" captures all the
passion and cultural muscularity of America's most battered town.
See "Tootie" and you'll never ask again, "Is New
Orleans really worth saving."
––Ellis Henican, New York Newsday, Sunday May 6, 2007
“Like films about
Native Americans and European Jews, you know how most stories shot
recently in New Orleans are going to end. Not this one. Hurricane
Katrina is more a denouement than the conclusion of the story of
legendary Mardi Gras Indian Allison "Tootie" Montana.
In finding out about Tootie, we learn so much: about the inherent
segregation of Mardi Gras, the 19th-century relationships between
slaves and local Choctaws, and about the real roots of jazz and
New Orleans R&B. But mostly, we learn about the amazing art
of creating the magnificent, feathered and beaded suits the Mardi
Gras Indians wear, and the role marching Indian groups like Tootie's
Yellow Pocahontas played in New Orleans' African-American culture.”
––Richard Hart, The Independent Weekly
the Big Easy's donation to Jazz at Lincoln Center, gets the Mont
Blanc de la Culture Award tonight. Wynton also offers his consummate
hepcat insight in "Tootie's Last Suit," Lisa Katzman's
fantastic documentary about the Mardi Gras Indian subculture. It
plays the Tribeca Film Fest for three days, starting tomorrow."
––Rush and Molloy, New York Daily News, Wednesday May
"....the film answers
the two essential questionsconcerning New Orleans today: WHAT exactly
was so special about New Orleans? And WHY should I care? After seeing
'Tootie's Last Suit,' you will know."
—Stephanie Dupuy Executive Director of Arts and Entertainment,
Director, The New Orleans Film Commission
Darryl Montana, Mardi Gras 2007, his suit an homage
father's last suit and incorporating an effigy of Tootie on the