7 items from 2015
Written & Directed by Kirby Dick
“Sexual assault has always been a part of the college experience,” laments a university administrator in Kirby Dick’s troubling documentary, The Hunting Ground. Unfortunately, this grim pronouncement is borne out by the statistics, which state that 20% of all female students will be assaulted during their college tenure. Through powerful interviews and a barrage of sobering data, Kirby exposes the epidemic of sexual abuse on campus, as well as the systemic efforts to cover it up. It’s a harrowing story about survivors reclaiming their sense of empowerment, both psychologically and legally.
When Annie Clark and Andrea Pino enrolled at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, they had no idea their college experience would be defined by sexual abuse. Both were raped early in their matriculation, and both were ignored by administrators more concerned about public image than public service. »
- J.R. Kinnard
Thursday night, Tina Tchen, Assistant to the President and Executive Director of the White House Council on Women and Girls, hosted a screening for White House staff, students and Senators Gillibrand and McCaskill, and U.S. Representative Maloney of Dick and Ziering's latest documentary, "The Hunting Ground." The duo worked together on 2012 Oscar nominee "The Invisible War," with Ziering conducting many of the harrowing interviews under Dick's direction. Dick has made a name for himself by writing and directing documentaries that challenge powerful institutions, from the Catholic Church (Oscar-nominated "Twist of Faith") to the MPAA Ratings Board ("This Film Is Not Yet Rated"). Most filmmakers hope that their movies will be seen, talked about, make money, earn awards, and maybe have some influence on the culture at large. With "The Invisible War," Dick and Ziering set their sights on reforming the U.S. Military. »
- Anne Thompson
For a moment there, it looked like The Interview was going to be the most important comedy of the 21st century. With hacks and terrorist threats obstructing its planned Christmas Day release in the United States, it was easily the most discussed movie of December 2014 and it finally reaches UK cinemas this Friday, after the fuss has died down.
In case you were pre-occupied during the festive season, it transpired that Us theatre chains refused to show the film in the wake of the threats, forcing Sony to pull their advertising and distribution plans. It eventually hit video on demand services on December 25th, after widespread calls for it from the press and President Barack Obama, no less.
But one of the more interesting and disappointing »
Let me say this upfront because I must confess: it is very hard to analyze a documentary on its technical merits when it is so excruciatingly emotional. The first documentary world premiere I caught at Sundance 2015 was The Hunting Ground, the new doc from acclaimed filmmaker Kirby Dick (of This Film Is Not Yet Rated and The Invisible War). This is such an important documentary that two senators were in the audience, but it's also important because it's showing the truth in the face of resistance, it's allowing us to actually hear from and listen to real people. The Hunting Ground is a film that explores the epidemic (yes) of campus rape occurring for decades at the most prestigious universities in America. And it's appalling. The Hunting Ground opens with an amusing "welcome to college" montage, reminding us that this is when everyone is supposed to go out and become an adult, »
- Alex Billington
It is relatively easy to move through the day without acknowledging the more disturbing and horrific trends that creep into society, and it could be argued that this natural tendency to follow the path of least resistance is at least part of the reason why those trends continue to creep. Fortunately, documentary filmmakers are prepared to lift those especially gnarly rocks and shine a light on the murky proceedings underneath, and that is what we have in The Hunting Ground.
Writer-director Kirby Dick has made a lengthy career of confronting those issues that many avoid. 2006’s This Film Is Not Yet Rated examined the questionable policies of the American movie ratings board, 2009’s Outrage looked at “closeted politicians” who lobby for anti-gay legislation in America, and most recently, 2012’s The Invisible War cast an uncompromising gaze on the issue of the rape of soldiers in the American military. It is »
- Sarah Myles
From Oscar-nominated "Invisible War" director Kirby Dick comes this brutal exposé of rising rape crimes on American college campuses, and the institutional cover-ups and victim-blaming that have followed. One student, as seen in the trailer below, alleges that after being sexually assaulted, the dean of her university told her "not to talk to anyone about this." The documentary film blends verité footage with first-person testimonies, following survivors who continue to pursue their education even while fighting for justice, and against retaliation and harassment. Following "The Invisible War," "This Film Is Not Yet Rated," "Twist of Faith" and "Derrida" among them, "Hunting Ground" marks the seventh documentary brought to Sundance from director Kirby Dick, who has shrewdly observed the systematic abuse of power throughout his career. "Invisible War" co-director produces "Hunting »
- Ryan Lattanzio
For your chance to receive two (2) complimentary passes to see an advance screening of The Wedding Ringer at the Emagine Royal Oak Theater in Royal Oak, Michigan on Wednesday, January 14th at 7:00Pm, just look for the “giveaway” box further down on this page.
There you’ll be directed to a variety of methods by which you can enter the contest. You’ll be asked to provide a valid email address, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter, and Tweet the contest. That’s it. That’s all you have to do to enter. We’ll contact you to let you know if you’ve won one of the pairs of passes that we have. But hurry, because the contest ends at 12:00Am on Tuesday morning, »
7 items from 2015
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