Descent (2007)


Descent (2007)

In the winter of her senior year, Maya talks to Jared at a frat party, accepts his invitation to dinner at a nice restaurant, then goes to his apartment, just to talk. He assaults her. Her personality changes, she's withdrawn; she graduates and takes a job at a clothing store, staying apart from co-workers. At night, she's someone else: a beauty at the club scene, dancing, seductive, sniffing cocaine, becoming the friend of a heavy hitter. She thinks about her racial identity. That fall, she's a grad student, and Jared is in an exam she proctors. She invites him to her apartment; he's certain she's stuck on him.
IMDb   4.7 /10
Metacritic   45 %
TheMovieDb    4.3 /10
RottenTomatoes  35 %
FilmAffinity   4.4 /10
Director Talia Lugacy
Writer Brian Priest
Writer Talia Lugacy
Release Date2007-04-25
Runtime1h 44min
GenreDrama, Thriller
Content RatingNC-17 (NC-17)
CompanyCity Lights Pictures, M.E.G.A. Films, Trybe Films
LanguageEnglish, Spanish
Jaredas Jared
Adrianas Adrian
Bodega Girlas Bodega Girl
Jonathan Neil Schneider
Jonathan Neil Schneider
Archaeology Professoras Archaeology Professor
Professor Byronas Professor Byron
Melanieas Melanie
Downstairs Guyas Downstairs Guy
Upstairs Guyas Upstairs Guy
Deniseas Denise
Aisleagh Jackson
Aisleagh Jackson
Construction Girlas Construction Girl
Robert Lehrer
Robert Lehrer
Speakeras Speaker
Selineas Seline
Brooksas Brooks
Lee Van Bradley
Lee Van Bradley
Harlanas Harlan
Celesteas Celeste

Descent (2007 film)

Descent is a 2007 American thriller film directed by Talia Lugacy and produced by and starring Rosario Dawson.


Maya is an upcoming artist and college student. In the winter of her senior year, Maya attends a fraternity party and meets a student named Jared who immediately starts courting her using all his eloquence behind which there is nothing but lies. Seduced by his lies, she accepts his invitation to dinner at a restaurant, then goes to his apartment, just to talk. They start to make out, but when Maya tells him to stop, Jared soon reveals his true self and brutally rapes her while uttering dehumanizing slurs in her ear.

Over the next year, Maya's personality changes. She becomes quiet and withdrawn, graduating from college and taking a job at a clothing store. She disconnects herself from society and other familiar surroundings while struggling to break free of the resulting depression and addiction. At night, she's someone else: a beauty at the nightclub scene, dancing, seductive, sniffing cocaine. Maya later meets and seeks out the help of a DJ she meets at a club, named Adrian, whom she confides in.

Maya becomes TA to a class Jared is in. One day she catches him cheating on an exam and threatens to report it, but instead uses it as an opportunity to lure Jared to her apartment. Jared willingly complies. She turns the tables on him by tying him to her bed and blindfolding him. She allows Adrian to rape Jared several times. Echoing what Jared said to Maya. In the final shot, Maya sits on the bed while behind her Adrian brutally sodomizes Jared. She eventually turns to Adrian, appearing to have been crying tears of joy silently.


  • Rosario Dawson as Maya
  • Chad Faust as Jared
  • Marcus Patrick as Adrian
  • James A. Stephens as Professor Byron
  • Vanessa Ferlito as Bodega girl
  • Tracie Thoms as Denise
  • Alexie Gilmore as Seline
  • Jonathan Tchaikovsky as Tyler
  • Phoebe Strole as Innocent Girl
  • Nicole Vicius as Melanie
  • Scott Bailey as Upstairs guy


Descent was released in two alternate cuts: a 105-minute uncut NC-17 rated version and a 95-minute R-rated version. The notable difference between the two is that the edited release omits about seven minutes of the second rape scene.


On Rotten Tomatoes the film has an approval rating of 35% based on reviews from 34 critics, with an average rating of 4.88/10. The website's consensus states: "Descent has the potential to make a statement about sexual violence, but falls flat by focusing on revenge rather than Rosario Dawson's emotional state." On Metacritic, the film has a score of 45 out of 100 based on reviews from 10 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".

Matt Zoller Seitz of The New York Times wrote: "Hard to watch but essential to see, Descent is at once realistic and rhetorical, and driven throughout by righteous anger that comes from an honest place."