For so many of us and our children, college is suppose to be a time of self discovery and new found independence. A chance to explore and learn in the the safety of a college community.
JJ Abrams, Juliana Marguiles, Holly Robinson Peete, Carly Simon, Joanne Woodward, Vera Wang and the late Barbara Walters are all notable alum from Sarah Lawrence College. All were young, impressionable and ready to take on the world…which they all with certainty did in their respective lanes.
Enter Talia, a brand new freshman, whose Dad (Larry Ray) she adored and had a past. However, his release from incarceration and consistent couch crashing where she and her roommates dwelled was the beginning of a series of events making the most cynical of humans jaw drop to their crack.
Stolen Youth: Inside The Cult at Sarah Lawrence chronicles conman Larry Ray’s creation of a sex cult compromised of his daughters and students from the prestigious Sarah Lawrence college in New York City.
Compiled personal audio tapes and video from victims and unfolding the story of his grim 10 year influence over a group of young people, this series follows the cult’s origins in 2010 on the Sarah Lawrence campus until its recent demise, when the last members find their own paths to survival.
It would be dishonest for me to communicate there were several elements about this documentary series that made me uncomfortable. Mostly, that a grown man used his military background to manipulate these young, impressionable minds. To be the sole reason, one young lady had her dreams of being physician snatched after all her hard work, studying, not to the mention the money her parents threw down made me beyond sad.
These types of stories are not uncommon and it is my hope more media sheds light on these injustices. The more these individuals are brought to task and realize their actions will no longer continue without consequences and repercussions the better more parents will be able to sleep at night.
Having said all of that, Stolen Youth drags on a bit before getting to the heart of the matter, but once it does, it will have you reeled in hook, line and sinker.