Main cast: Rosario Dawson (Maya), Chad Faust (Jared), and Marcus Patrick (Adrian)
Director: Talia Lugacy
Descent attempts to be a dark psychological thriller about a rape victim who wanders around in a spiral of self-destructive behavior until she finally pulls herself long enough to pull off an equally brutal act of revenge on her rapist. Rosario Dawson plays Maya, a college student whose date with a fellow student Jared ends with her brutal rape by him. While indulging in drugs and pointless sexual encounters with random strangers, she befriends Adrian and together with him she comes up with a way to really get back at Jared.
The movie attempts to deliver a message about how ultimately such act of vengeance does little to heal Maya’s soul and she would most likely have to find other ways to move forward in life, but the movie ends up falling short of my expectations. The pacing is off – the movie moves at an agonizingly slow and meandering pace, allowing Ms Dawson to stare blankly at the screen. No doubt she is wondering what she is doing in that movie. Director and screenwriter Talia Lugacy doesn’t seem to know what to do with her movie apart from the rape at the start of the movie and the over-the-top revenge thing at the end. As a result, the only thing this movie has going for it is its shock value.
I know there are many people who believe that Maya ends up becoming a bigger monster than Jared by enacting such an act of vengeance, but I personally have no sympathy at all for the rapist. However, by the time the movie reaches that climatic point, I am so numbed by boredom that I can care less by that point what she does to Jared.
Oh, and if you are expecting to see in this movie parts of Rosario Dawson’s body that are normally clothed, you will be very disappointed. You will, however, catch a long glimpse of Marcus Patrick’s bare behind and a rather impressive full frontal exposure by Chad Faust. That is, if you can stay awake long enough to reach for the fast forward button on your remote control after thirty minutes into this movie.