The Order of Myths (2008)

TOMATOMETER

AUDIENCE SCORE

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.


Movie Info

In director Margaret Brown's The Order of Myths, she explores the parties, parades, and lesser-known gatherings that encompass the hedonistic event known as Mardi Gras, discovering that complex issues of class, race, and politics are seldom left behind, even in the name of celebration.

Rating: Unrated
Genre: Documentary, Faith & Spirituality, Musical & Performing Arts, Special Interest
Directed By:
Written By: Margaret Brown
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jan 13, 2009
Runtime:
The Cinema Guild - Official Site

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Critic Reviews for The Order of Myths

All Critics (32) | Top Critics (11)

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.

November 7, 2008
Washington Post
Top Critic

Entertaining and provocative.

Full Review… | October 18, 2008
AV Club
Top Critic

An invaluable portrait of us-and-them America, a smart, generous, poignant, quietly disturbing movie about secrecy and hospitality.

Full Review… | October 18, 2008
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

On both sides of the Mobile Mardi Gras divide, people seem to be edging toward a desire for reconciliation, but there remain significant differences about what that might entail.

Full Review… | July 25, 2008
Salon.com
Top Critic

Wise and soberly affecting documentary about the separate but unequal Mardi Gras festivities that take place each year in Mobile, Ala.

July 25, 2008
New York Times
Top Critic

To say each group takes this tradition seriously can in no way convey the absolute nuttiness and frenzy that filmmaker Margaret Brown has captured.

Full Review… | July 23, 2008
New York Observer
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The Order of Myths

[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]

Harlequin68
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

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.

John Ballantine
John Ballantine

Super Reviewer

very very strange documentary about how the first Mardi Gras was held in Mobile, Alabama and the continuing tradition that comes along with it.

jules07d
Julie D

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