"[Renaissance Village] does a great job of bringing the viewer into the complexity of the aftermath of Katrina… It is only through documentaries such as this that we can work to make sure history does not repeat itself."

Karen Profita, President/CEO, Capital Area United Way


"Renaissance Village is a great insight into the clash between social issues of homelessness, hunger, and poverty, and the public policy issues of housing and disaster recovery…I highly recommend it to everyone."

Michael Brown, Former Under Secretary of Homeland Security & Director of FEMA


"Renaissance Village is an excellent documentary…[it] exposes the individual plight of people that lost everything."

Harold M. Rideau, Mayor, City of Baker


"Renaissance Village does what documentaries can be so good at: giving voice to people who have been denied a chance to speak. Renaissance Village’s strength lies in Chasnoff’s willingness to pursue this story over an extended length of time so that we can share the frustration these people experienced as they tried to get more help or even just information. Chasnoff gives us individuals to identify with rather than statistics and that makes his film far more effective and meaningful."

Beth Accomando, Film Critic and Co-host, Film Club of the Air


"Profoundly moving, this important documentary is an intimate and touching look at FEMA’s largest post-Katrina trailer park and its forgotten residents… this audience-pleasing documentary stands-out and deserves wide distribution."

Thomas Baker, Ph.D., Coordinator, The Indie Fest


"This is as much a story of pride as it is about betrayal; in its light shed on the true lives of the victims of Hurricane Katrina (and its aftermath) it makes the invisible visible."

Side shots film blog


"Renaissance Village is a remarkable accomplishment. It delivers intimate, gripping portraits of the lives and strivings of residents, and depicts with searing clarity the survival dilemmas they face on a daily basis. Yet, the movie never loses sight of the larger players, both government and corporate, who have wittingly and unwittingly allowed a natural disaster to become a human travesty."

Omar M. McRoberts, Author, Streets of Glory: Church and Community in a Black Urban Neighborhood (University of Chicago Press).


"…viewers must be prepared for an account that delivers much more than the nightly news-oriented focus on tumult and crisis… Renaissance Village is not about the tragedy of the post-Hurricane Katrina recovery effort, but about the multiple ways in which the disempowered read and respond to crises, how personal, political, and social histories shape their choice to pursue certain actions, and how those factors also shape the ways they are responded to by those who are formally charged with addressing their needs."

Alford A. Young, Jr. Department of Sociology and Center for Afroamerican and African Studies, University of Michigan


"Through the film's sensitive, multi-faceted portrayal, we get to really know a cross-section of displaced New Orleanians struggling to achieve our most basic human goal: a home…Renaissance Village is a compelling reminder that the story of Hurricane Katrina didn't end when the floodwaters receded."

Josh Neufeld, writer/artist of A.D.: New Orleans After the Deluge (Pantheon Graphic Novels, 2009)


Cinema Verdict

"…Renaissance Village is recommended viewing, and achieves the considerable feat of being politically thought-provoking while retaining a notable measure of objectivity…The result is a solid documentary that manages to avoid many of the obvious pitfalls of the genre."


Bright Lights Film Journal

"A chief virtue of Renaissance Village is that the filmmakers didn't need to be polemical; the facts were sufficient to make the case, and that's what Chasnoff and his crew rely on. That approach, along with the compelling cast of characters and a dramatic narrative of life lived in extremis, makes this an important addition to the socially conscious documentary."