An improved tissue engagement device such as a suction stabilizer or retractor. The stabilizer or retractor is provided with one or more suction pods mounted to the distal end of a flexible arm. The flexible arm is coupled to a base assembly, which attaches the arm to an associated retractor or other structure that is fixedly located relative to the operative site. The base assembly includes a fixed portion, which is coupled to the retractor or other fixed mounting point and a rotatable turret, allowing rotation of the arm relative to the fixed portion of the base assembly. A tensioning mechanism mounted to the turret applies tension to compress the turret around a corresponding pivot mounted to the fixed portion of the base to rotationally lock the turret and to lock the arm in its current configuration.