The Boys of St. Vincent

Religion Drama Movies
November 29, 2008

The Boys of St. Vincent [2004] [DVD]

Starring: Henry Czerny, Johnny Morina, Brian Dooley, Philip Dinn, Brian Dodd

Studio: New Yorker Video

Format: Color, DVD-Video, Letterboxed, Widescreen, Full Screen, NTSC

Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1

Run Time: 186 minutes

Rating: NR (Not Rated)

Inside the walls of St. Vincents Orphanage, young boys fall victim to sexual, physical and emotional abuse at the hands of their guardians. Henry Czerny (Mission: Impossible,Clear and Present Danger) gives a terrifying performance as Brother Lavin, the head of the orphanage who must juggle the teachings of the church with his own personal demons. The plight of the boys under his care remains a secret until the orphanage janitor and a local policeman speak out against the Brothers appalling treatment of the orphans. During the ensuing investigation, the boys courageously testify against the Brothers. Fearing a scandal, religious and civil authorities conspire to shut down the case and quietly transfer the accused Brothers to new postings. Fifteen years later, still unhealed, the victims go public with their ordeal. As the veil of secrecy is finally lifted, their story will shock the world.

From the director of Dangerous Minds comes this controversial story that was one of the years most powerful and critically acclaimed films.

Based on a true case that scandalized Canada, this film takes place in two halves. The first, set in the mid-1970s, deals with a Catholic orphanage, run by Brother Lavin (Henry Czerny), who doesn't have the boys' best interest at heart. Rather, he uses them to fuel his own sick sexual desires, becoming a predator in a priest's collar, making an indelible mark on 10-year-old boys. And he's not the only one (just the most vicious). Cut to 1990: One of the now-grown boys comes forward to accuse Lavin and face him in court. But Lavin is now married and the father of two boys—and the church continues to deny that any impropriety occurred. This is strong stuff, with the emotional pain almost harder to take than the shadowy scenes of sexual abuse—but the latter are upsetting as well. Originally made for Canadian TV but released in American theaters. — Marshall Fine


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