[Review] Hoodwinked: A Documentary


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The film begins asking passersby, “Name a positive stereotype about Black people?” Needless to say, they (including Howard University students) were stumped. The next question he asks sets the tone and reveals the premise for the documentary. Are there more Black men in college or in prison?The answer… in college! The national media and specialty media outlets like Ebony have all reported the contrary. Unfortunately, these “news” outlets did not fact check the study that originally reported that claim. The truth is 1.2 million Black men are in college and 841,000 in prisons. Furthermore, that 841k figure represents males of all ages, while college age is considered to be between the ages of 18 and 25 years old.

The film disabuses the audience of many of the misconceptions attained from the false facts and misleading statistics, including but not limited to, dropout rate, graduation rate, male to female ratio, marriage rates, etc.

Why do these negative, slanted statics exist? Money. In order for non-profits and special interest groups to get grants and sponsorship they have to seem like they are the solution to a compelling problem.  In turn, they oversell the worst in order to do “good.”

Constantly bombarding young Black minds with negative statistics and stereotypes creates a self-fulfilling prophecy. Black kids grow up hopeless and are easily convinced to become the hoodlums the television, radio and their community told them they would be.

“They have scaled down their dreams to the level of their current experience.”

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