The Hunting Ground a startling exposé of rape crimes on U.S. campuses, institutional cover-ups and the brutal social toll on victims
Excited at having landed a place at the University of North Carolina, Annie Clark's elation evaporated when she was raped before classes began. She is far from alone: studies show that 20% of women will suffer a sexual attack at university. In a masterful, wide-ranging investigation, Kirby Dick and Amy Ziering present dozens of testimonials detailing how universities of every shape and size collude to cover up sexual crimes on their campuses, creating an ideal "hunting ground" for serial offenders.
Fear of damaging their reputation - and enrolment - drives shocking behaviour throughout the universities, with the fraternity and athletic communities covering up the most grievous assaults. For many victims, the institutional denial proves even more painful than the crime itself. But hope is in sight as Annie and other victims begin to fight back through the courts, hitting universities where it hurts - by threatening their revenue streams.
This galvanic and compelling doc seems likely to reverberate in the public discourse and beyond, likely matching or exceeding its predecessor’s performance - Ben Kenigsberg - Variety
A blunt instrument of a movie, it derives its power largely from the many young women and some men recounting on camera how they were raped at their schools and then subsequently denied justice by those same schools. Their stories — delivered in sorrow and rage, with misting eyes and squared jaws — make this imperfect movie a must-watch work of cine-activism, one that should be seen by anyone headed to college and by those already on campus. Manohla Dargis - NYT