Student safety not guaranteed

MOVIE REVIEW- Documentary filmmaker and Oscar nominee Kirby Dick uses his latest film to point the spotlight on sex crimes occurring on college campuses. 

By Amanda Cavarretta, Copy Editor 

Founders of EROC (End Rape on Campus), Annie Clark and Andrea Pino. The Hunting Ground

Founders of EROC (End Rape on Campus), Annie Clark and Andrea Pino.

Annie Clark and Andrea Pino were bright-eyed freshmen excited to attend their first year at University of North Carolina. However, before the semester even started, they were both raped.  When Clark spoke to an administrator about her rape, she received an unbelievable response, “Rape is like a football game. If you look back on the game, what would have you done differently?”

This is just one of the many stories shared in a new upcoming documentary, “The Hunting Ground.”

The girls joined forces to create an organization called End Rape on Campus (EROC). Clark and Pino travel the country to help others file a Title IX (a law that discriminates against sexual harassment, assault, and rape) complaint against the schools.

Documentary filmmaker and Oscar nominee Kirby Dick uses his latest film to point the spotlight on sex crimes occurring on college campuses nationwide and how the institutions try to cover them up. 

“The Hunting Ground” is a Sundance documentary that exposes colleges and why they silence those who are sexually assaulted. Elite schools such as Harvard, Yale, UC Berkeley and Notre Dame are under the microscope for how they handle sexual assult investigations. Finally, these women and men have a chance to speak up. From victim to survivor, they are becoming activists with hopes of making a change.

According to the film, one in five women will be sexually assaulted before they graduate from college. With a number so high, why is there little awareness? With colleges protecting themselves like a brand, any bad press can potentially hurt them and deter students from applying to their college. 

One of the most alarming stories was about a girl who claimed she was drugged, kidnapped, and sexually assaulted by Florida State University quarterback, Jameis Winston. Without any conviction, Winston went on to win the Heisman Trophy. Soon after, another woman came forward and claimed that she too was sexually assaulted by Winston. The school continued to look the other way and Winston currently prepares for the upcoming 2015 NFL draft. 

While viewing this film, the audience reacted constantly with disgusted gasps and vigorous head shaking. The stories shared will move some to tears. With heavy material, “The Hunting Ground” will take you out of your seat and put you into the survivor’s shoes. It’s a tough documentary to wrap your head around and might make your stomach turn a bit. “The Hunting Ground” should be shown at every school nationwide.

**** (out of 5) 

“The Hunting Ground” opens in theaters Feb. 27, 2015 nationwide and will be airing on CNN later this spring. 

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