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The Boys of St. Vincent (1994)

Henry Czerny , Johnny Morina , John N. Smith  |  NR |  DVD
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)


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Product Details

  • Actors: Henry Czerny, Johnny Morina, Brian Dooley, Philip Dinn, Brian Dodd
  • Directors: John N. Smith
  • Writers: John N. Smith, Des Walsh, Sam Grana
  • Producers: Claudio Luca, Colin Neale, Martine Allard, Nicole de Rochemont
  • Format: Color, Letterboxed, Widescreen, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: New Yorker Video
  • DVD Release Date: September 28, 2004
  • Run Time: 186 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000DIJON
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #186,626 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Boys of St. Vincent" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Trailer

Editorial Reviews

Inside the walls of St. Vincent’s 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 year’s most powerful and critically acclaimed films.


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Searing And Heartbreaking Portrait March 1, 2006
Format:DVD
Let me just say that this is possibly the finest Canadian film ever produced. And it also foreshadows the scandal that would hit the headlines in the US a decade later.

Although fictionalized, the movie is clearly based on the case of Mount Cashel Orphange in Newfoundland in the 1970s. The investigation into allegations of abuse by the clergy against their young charges was hushed up. And, for fear of scandal, suppressed and brought to light some years later, igniting a media firestorm.

The performances of the cast could not have been better. Henry Czerny, as Brother Peter Lavin, manages to be both repulsive and strangely sympathetic at the same time. His dominating, abusive [...]control over the institution and the children makes his performance absolutely riveting. The other adult performers are perfectly matched, and the child actors are remarkable. When it airs on American TV, it is always heavily censored, so it is best to see it on Canadian channels, or better yet, on video and DVD. The portrayal of abuse is not overly graphic, but enough is shown so that the viewer can have no doubts as to what is taking place. When the police, headed by Detective Noseworthy (a terrific Brian Dooley) begin to investigate the abuse reports through social services, Lavin really gets nervous, but conceals this behind tremendous arrogance and defensiveness. [...] many of his fellow priests also harbor a sick desire for these young boys they are supposed to protect. Johnny Morina, Brian Dodd, Ashley Billard, Jonathan Lewis, and Jeremy Keefe are touchingly vulnerable as the kids who are constantly victimized and terrified by these supposed "Men Of God".
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finally a movie that makes the church accountable December 16, 2004
Format:DVD
What can be said about the Boys Of St Vincents that has not already been said. I am awaiting my DVD of this Tele Movie, after first viewing this (mini-series, as we call them here in Australia) back in the 90s, I was so amazed to see that these things so often go un checked and undelt with by the authorities and the (not suprising) Church or are swept under the carpet to protect, not so much as the preist, but the church's reputation at the expence of the child that is the victim of these haenious crimes.. This movie makes me wonder just how long this has been going on. It was good to see movie that was not afraid to tackle the taboo subject of Child Molestation and physical abuse.The acting is 100%, and as with the rest of the reviews, Henry's portrayal of Brother Lavin was nothing short of brilliant, the part was well executed in his acting ability. The children that were cast also put in exceptional performances. This movie is not really for the faint at heart but a very hard hitting in your face movie. A lot has been said about the breif child nudity, I do not believe that this taints the movie in any way and is with in the context of what this movies is about, Child, mental,physical and sexual abuse. Defenatly a must see for anyone who loves a good movie and a true one at that. Though it is loosly based on fact, this does seem to be happening more and more these days. This movie provokes discussion and can only assist to stop these kinds of things from happening. Do yourself a favour and buy this DVD today.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Powerful and moving August 1, 2004
By Mrmarty
Format:DVD
"St Vincnet Boys" Is one of those Films that you find hard to say was Brilliant, because of its content. Its hard in the same way that Schindlers List was hard to review as a brilliant film as it was a devistating true event. (if you get my meaning.) As you sit and watch this film you are taken on a journey of pain and helpness, as you watch these poor children get driven through a cascade of torture, both mental and physical.

The acting is superb! of both that of the adults and the children, and is a credit to the director.

enjoy the film, but remember it is a true story and unfortunelty one of many.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD
This film now on DVD provides a thorough insight into the debauchery rampant in the Catholic Church. It takes place in a boys orphanage run by religious brothers who proudly carry a large crucifix in their belts while fondling and raping young boys.

It shows in detail how the hierarchy of the Church refused to act appropriately or perhaps I should say at all on what was happening until the media and the law put on enough heat making the Bishop change staffing at the Orphanage. What happened though was that the replacements were also heartless pedophiles.

This movie brought many memories of what Boston went thru with Cardinal Law who was punished with exile as a Prince of the Church in one of the most palatial rectories in Rome.

The problems will not go away until all of the hierarchy present and past are deceased, including Benedict 16th who was responsible for rewarding his pedaphiles with sanctuary and forgiveness in Rome.

Every Catholic should see this film; howe
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars shocking and prevogative February 12, 2007
Format:DVD
Disturbing and raw look at pedophelia and abuse in general. You cant help but fall in love with the kids and want to yank them from the grips of their abusers yourself.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Disturbing, but informative
Perhaps this is hyped up a bit, but it is probably not too far off base, either.

It came along during a period of exposed allegations of sexual abuse of minors, by... Read more
Published 2 months ago by G. Murphy
1.0 out of 5 stars Rip off
THis is only part one. This is a two part movie, no where does it say that it is just part one. Without the second part it makes no sense.
Published 19 months ago by Merle J. Yost
4.0 out of 5 stars Dark and Disturbing
Even though this is a work of fiction, it was inspired by real-life events. The pain and suffering visited upon the young, vulnerable boys will evoke a deep emotional response from... Read more
Published on February 2, 2012 by Thomas H. Fields
5.0 out of 5 stars Gut Wrenching
What an incredible movie. Very difficult to sit through at times. I hope the actors won lots of awards for their amazing performances. Read more
Published on August 30, 2011 by Charles Wild
4.0 out of 5 stars The Boys of St. Vincent
My initial order was lost in the post but the matter was dealt with speedily and very efficiently by Amazon and a replacement was sent out almost immediately. Read more
Published on May 11, 2008 by Mr. Michael Wallis
5.0 out of 5 stars A disturbing film but an important statement about child abuse
I have viewed this film several times and it is never any easier to watch but I find myself somehow better for the experience. Read more
Published on December 20, 2007 by Dean Alden Morse
1.0 out of 5 stars Unpleasant
I remember I first saw this movie on July of 1996 first on the A&E Channel and I later rented it later that summer. This was not a nice movie. Read more
Published on May 10, 2007 by Richard Beck
4.0 out of 5 stars Love Foreign Films
This film "Boys Of St. Vincent", helped me emotionally in the same was as did the film "Abandoned". This film was just as good ... no better or worse. Read more
Published on November 10, 2006 by Robert Bernhardt
5.0 out of 5 stars GREAT MOVIE
I saw this movie on cable on 1994, since then I've been looking for it, now I could get it, this is a great movie that teach us a lot of things and help us understand how can we... Read more
Published on July 10, 2006 by Henry Sanchez
4.0 out of 5 stars Good melodrama, fine leading performance, handsome production
For all the care they put into this fine, textured story of a pedophilia scandal in a Catholic orphanage in 1970s Newfoundland, the filmmakers can't let go of the conventional... Read more
Published on February 12, 2006 by Sometime Critic
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