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The Boys of St. Vincent

4.0 out of 5 stars 33 customer reviews

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(Sep 28, 2004)
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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.

Special Features

  • Trailer

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:
    Not Rated
  • Studio: New Yorker Video
  • DVD Release Date: September 28, 2004
  • Run Time: 93 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000DIJON
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #137,759 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Boys of St. Vincent" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

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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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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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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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
A number of times, I have viewed this DVD when it arrived. On first impression, the contents in the production of this DVD could be offensive in regards to all the scenes of Nude Boys, especially the few scenes where Adults are portrayed actually sexually molesting the boys although subdued but easily implied. However, after a number of viewings, I conclude there are a number of essential lessons to be learned from this DVD which will leave the viewer more informed. As I share my observations, keep in mind it is my foremost principle that any abuse of a minor is wrong.
First, at the beginning of the DVD, the commentary states the production is not an actual true story, but reenactment of events that
had occurred in the past. This is necessary to protect the innocent, and a safety provision for Whistleblowers. Whether a victim or an accused proven not guilty, to be known in the public has tragic consequences, due to the nature of the subject. Due to negative
reactions, some have had to enter witness protection programs to lead a normal life.
Second, this DVD is a good example of what happened to Whistleblowers: A Janitor who dared to take a minor boy victim to
the hospital for treatment was fired and left unemployed. Also, in the DVD, some of the Catholic Brothers on the Orphanage Staff
who stopped the sexual abuse of some of the orphan boys were penalized. Instead of public recognition - or even being put in charge of the Orphanage for their trustworthiness and accountability, were actually brushed aside as replacements came in with an agenda to cover up rather than resolve the abuses. Notice some of those Catholic Brothers were ignored who protested no issue
of professional services to the sexually abused boys were pursued for their recovery?!
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