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Desecration (1999)

Irma St. Paule , Christie Sanford , Dante Tomaselli  |  Unrated |  DVD
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Irma St. Paule, Christie Sanford, Danny Lopes, Salvatore Paul Piro, Vincent Lamberti
  • Directors: Dante Tomaselli
  • Writers: Dante Tomaselli
  • Producers: Dante Tomaselli, Jack Swain, Tony Rullis
  • Format: Color, Letterboxed, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Image Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: March 14, 2000
  • Run Time: 88 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 6305772320
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #203,823 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Desecration" on IMDb

Special Features

  • 3-Minute Desecration Short

Editorial Reviews

Writer/director Dante Tomaselli's atmospheric and terrorizing first feature film. One of the most original horror films in recent years, "Desecration" is an eerily dazzling and genuinely frightening psychological chiller about a beyond-the-grave relationship between a teenage boy and his long-dead mother. Bobby, a 16-year-old loner, has been emotionally damaged by his mother's early death and a repressive Catholic upbringing. The boy accidentally causes a nun's death, triggering a chain of supernatural events and violent mayhem that leads Bobby into Hell to confront his mother. Powerful childhood demons are exorcised and unleashed as the gates of Hell open in this gripping, hallucinatory film.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An outstanding homage to Euro-horror of the 1970s December 14, 2002
I have a feeling that as soon as more people are exposed to Tomaselli's second feature "Horror," they'll be scrambling to get a copy of "Desecration" and sales for that will suddenly go up. It's a good feeling to be one of the first fans of this film.
Those weened on "Scream"-influenced comedy/horror/pop soundtrack films will not find anything redeeming with this film, as it is very much a cerebral study. It is the only film in many years that has come anywhere close to capturing the style and mystery of the great 1970s Italian horror films in the vein of Bava and Argento. If you love that, then you won't mind that the plot is not easily played out and that you have to use your mind a bit to get through the story.
A boy in a Catholic school accidentally kills a nun, and it either opens the gate to hell or he's plagued with guilt -- have fun figuring it out -- what follows is 88 minutes of hallucinatory images, scary nuns (the main ghoul still gives me extreme creeps), and a great score. Seems when someone wants to get out of Hell, that person would do just about anything!
Sure, there are many low-budget things that those who enjoy "teen" fare will gripe about (most likely they'll whine about Irma St. Paule's hacking cough throughout the film or the death by remote control plane). I had no problem with the film's budget limitations, as Tomaselli is quite a visionary and makes up for any flaws with an abundance of ambition, style, and originality even when giving a nod to his influences. It's rare for me to be so excited by a discovery such as "Desecration," and I urge those with open minds to see why, in general, reviews from the press as well as lovers of obscure cinema are raving about this gem.
I first got "Desecration" when it was higher-priced, and did not regret it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Creepy in spots March 4, 2004
A nun dies when a model airplane bores into her temple. A troubled youth watches a friend disappear into a hole in the ground. A mess of vines fills a dorm room while a young man lies on his bed in a stupor. Ominous clowns invade dreams. A pair of scissors soars through the air and stabs another nun to death. A ghostly apparition exuding an aura of spine chilling dread appears at random to terrorize the living. A grandmother with a hacking cough frets for her grandson's safety. A jigsaw puzzle has a mind of its own. An insane mother long dead makes herself felt from beyond the grave and from the deepest pits of Hell. Just another day down at the local church, right? Wrong! These elements are only a few of the disturbing images you will see in Dante Tomaselli's ultra low budget shocker "Desecration," a movie that none other than Image Entertainment decided to release on DVD. Someone in Tinseltown ought to give this guy a budget and a chance. "Desecration," in certain respects, is one of the better low budget shockers I have seen.
The story focuses on Bobby, a lonely teenager attending a live-in Catholic school somewhere in New Jersey or New York (it's gotta be one of the two after hearing those accents). The kid's life is a mess, partly due to the oppressive atmosphere of the school and partly due to growing up in a household where the mother had a serious mental problem. Bobby's mother died years ago, apparently, and the only family he has left is his aging Italian grandmother and an uncle. His life begins a huge downward spiral when he accidentally kills a nun with his remote controlled airplane.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Looks good but leaves you with no answers October 2, 2006
Apparently "Desecration" is a low budget, independant film. Well, I will give it full credit for working on a low budget as it visually belies such humble origins. The film looks wonderful most of the time. Sadly, what it doesn't have is a decent story.

There really isn't much plot to describe. What I do know is that a boy called Bobby is currently attending a religeous school, and his life is blighted by two tragedies. First was the loss of his mother at an early age, and more recently his accidental killing of a nun by his out of control model aircraft which flies into her face, killing her outright (!). But from this early promising start, the film almost immediately gets lost in constant and unexplained "surreal" imagery. The young boy is haunted and hounded by apparitions of the dead nun, and the rest of the school is similarly troubled, as other nuns start to experience various paranormal manifestations, including one quite startling sequence (probably the one most people are going to remember) in which a nun is attacked by a floating pair of scissors. Bobby starts suffering from vivid and macabre nightmares in which he is chased by clowns or attacked by the ghoulish dead nun or surrounded by evil sprouting plants. Some of them involve his dead mother, but why does she appear to be the same person as the nun who was killed by the model aeroplane?

This all looks very impressive on screen, but after about 60 minutes of such whacky imagery, it started to dawn on me that the film didn't really have a lot else to offer other than this.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent
Dante Tomaselli's debut horror haunting flick is a fresh bite to the horror genre...I recommend it strongly for any horror fans
Published on September 22, 2011 by alexis dragby
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, if incoherent, microbudget flick.
Desecration (Dante Tomaselli, 1999)

Desecration, Dante Tomaselli's first film, lacked anything approaching a rational budget for a movie, and, most of the time, also... Read more
Published on March 10, 2008 by Robert Beveridge
5.0 out of 5 stars Dante's Terror
I thought this was a very interesting show when I saw back a few years.Saw it again a fews back and even enjoyed better than I remembered. Read more
Published on June 11, 2006 by whitewolf
5.0 out of 5 stars Dante is a true master of the medium
From what I understand, Dante Tomaselli is being considered for directing the new "Halloween 9". I believe that a big-budget horror movie in the hands of Dante Tomaselli could... Read more
Published on March 7, 2006 by Michael Rosenstark
1.0 out of 5 stars Desecration of the art of cinema
Bought desecration on a whim, reading all the good reviews (what drugs are you guys on??), but this movie is complete low budget trash. Read more
Published on October 8, 2005 by catfewd
1.0 out of 5 stars Desecration indeed
Tomaselli displays the narrative precision and sure directorial hand of a young Ed Wood. I've seen plenty of admirable low budget movies. This isn't one of them. Read more
Published on March 6, 2005 by zothhh
5.0 out of 5 stars Dante Tomaselli = A New Era In Euro-Horror Films!
Dante Tomaselli's "DESECRATION" is a nightmare caught on film! by far one of the all time most BRILLIANT directorial debut's. Read more
Published on March 4, 2005 by creatureart
1.0 out of 5 stars Why can't I rate it 0 stars?
Usually I enjoy the first attempt of an artist more than their later works. I think the Pixies first album is the best, along with Led Zepplin and Black Sabbath. Read more
Published on December 7, 2004 by Daniel R. Burnell
1.0 out of 5 stars dumb
This movie made no sense. After an hour of trying to stay awake I found that I could not understand the characters or the bad acting. Read more
Published on December 7, 2004 by Dimmu Borgir
5.0 out of 5 stars some of the best horror in a looong time
if you are into pop horror well you will not like this movie because this movie actually has a spine. This movie is brilliant, straight up. Read more
Published on April 13, 2004 by G. Hurley
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