Wu-Tang Clan’s RZA takes his directorial talent to New Orleans as new film Cut Throat City tackles life post-Hurricane Katrina.
Written by Paul Cuschieri, the drama-heist thriller concentrates on a group of friends coping with the damage of the storm on their lives, homes, and future. And when they can’t count on FEMA for help, a local gangster offers them relief—at a dangerous cost.
On the 15th anniversary of the devastating hurricane, RZA and Cuschieri take viewers to the Lower Ninth Ward. Shameik Moore plays a loving husband and father Blink looking to support his family. However, 2005’s Hurricane Katrina stripped him and his community of stability, shelter, income, and any trust in the government. With limited job opportunities and lack of FEMA aid, Blink and best friends Andre (Denzel Whitaker), Miracle (Demetrius Shipp, Jr.), and Junior (Keean Johnson) take unlawful measures to battle with their circumstances. It all starts with a deal made to a local gangster, Cousin Bass (T.I.). *Cue the melee.* The crew shortly finds themselves on the run—from detectives, from a local warlord, from unfavorable odds.
“Katrina’s always been with us. It just had a bunch of different names.”
RZA and Cuschieri shine a light on the real-life socioeconomic disparities experienced by predominantly Black communities. For New Orleans, the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina was detrimental to the already existing shortage of economic mobility. The two also point out that with limited choices, one will do anything. Anyone can become a criminal. So the question of villainy in this film is not about whether what the characters are doing is legal or illegal. In Machiavellian terms, do their goals and intents justify their actions? You be the jury to their character. And by the end of the film, you’ll discover that RZA and Cuschieri have also chosen you to be the judge deciding the character’s fates.
Cut Throat City makes its way to theaters on August 21, 2020. Check your local areas for social distancing protocols.