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Don’t worry world! We always support watching documentaries legally and many of the films we recommend on Influence Film Club are available where you live too. We suggest using your preferred method for watching a film – such as searching iTunes, Amazon, Netflix, VOD platforms (video-on-demand), or renting/buying a DVD.

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Hoop Dreams

Trailing two young men who are given the opportunity to attend a suburban prep school and play for a legendary high school basketball coach, HOOP DREAMS depicts the universal process of growing up, coming of age, the love and conflict between families and friends.

Director: Steve James
Year: 1994
Time: 170 min

 Hoop Dreams
(1994) on IMDb

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Ways to Influence

Share this film. Give others the chance to see this classic documentary and be effected by its story.

Support one of  the Arthur Agee Jr. Role Model Foundation‘s initatives. The organization works to end bullying and to help children find a constructive path to follow in life through education. 

Become a mentor in President Obama’s My Brother’s Keeper community, an initiative “to address persistent opportunity gaps faced by boys and young men of color and ensure that all young people can reach their full potential.”

Learn more about Skool of Skills – a Chicago area sports and educational charity. 

Related Articles and Resources

An Oral History of Hoop Dreams, 20 Years After Its Premiere

“Twenty years after the film premiered at Sundance and was awarded the festival’s Audience Award, it’s grown into an iconic work.”

The Dissolve Oral Histories dig up the stories behind the filmmaking scenes by talking to those who were there.


Listen to our playlist with music from the film on Spotify.

Arthur Agee Foundation

“The goal of the foundation is to keep kids dreaming, but at the same, improve their chances and options where they can start dreaming of a life outside of basketball and sports.”

Visit the Arthur Agee Foundation Wesbsite to find out more

Interview With Director Steve James

Dazed interview HOOP DREAMS director Steve James.


Our interview with Steve James.

William Gates Jr. Carving His Own Path

“On his first day of high school almost four years ago, William Gates Jr. began to understand the pressure that came with sharing the same name as a Chicago basketball legend. A classmate familiar with the award-winning 1994 documentary HOOP DREAMS approached Gates that afternoon and told him he’d never be as good a player as his dad.”

Read the full article here.

Playground Basketball is Dying

“…Now the courts are empty, the nets dangling by a thread. The crowds that used to stand four deep are gone, and so are the players. Once players asked “Who’s got next?” Now the question is “Anyone want to play?” And the answer seems to be no, at least not here, not outside.

Playground basketball, at least as we knew it, is dying.”

Read the full article on ESPN.

Dr. Boyce: How Sports Marginalizes Black Men From Society

Read the article on News One.

The NBA’s Path Out Of Poverty Is More An Exception Than A Rule

An observation being regularly thrown around is that the NBA is an “escape” for young black children from poor backgrounds but a research published in the New York Times recently reveals  poor children have less of a shot of making it into the NBA – and many professional sports – than their wealthier competitors.

Read the full article on TPM.

Black Single Mothers Are ‘Biggest Impediment’ To Progress

A 2010 study revealing that 72 percent of black children are born to unwed mothers has sparked debate on the usage of statistics. Find out more on the Huffington Post.


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