The Federation Of Black 

The Federation Of Black Cowboys


Reviewed by: Gator MacReady

In New York, there are kids who stay out of trouble by riding around Harlem on horses. Does this mean they may be in danger of getting horsejacked?

Eric Martz's documentary is just over an hour long, so it doesn't outstay its welcome, or overstate what little point it has to make. Black kids from the age of 15 to a 90-year-old dude hang out at the ranch (in Brooklyn!) and cowboy things. Sadly, there are no barfights, bank robberies or jailbreaks in this 'un. They wash the horses, ride them and that's it. Wow!

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What bothers me is why the black community feels the need to segregate itself from the rest of society. If the Gator were to start his own white exclusive men's club - outside of those Country Clubs that I own, of course - there would be outrage and claims of racism. But it's okay for black people to do it.

I really do think it's time for everybody to just get along, but these folk want to keep it all black. And I don't think that's a good message to be sending out. But the movie never addresses this and feels like nothing more than propaganda.

Apparently a third of cowboys were black and they did the job well. These urban range-riders are real proud of this.

Oh, and they also mention that their granddaddies were slaves.

Reviewed on: 21 Aug 2003
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Documentary about black cowboys in Brooklyn.

Director: Eric Martz

Year: 2003

Runtime: 66 minutes

Country: US


EIFF 2003

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