A college co-ed is brutally raped and struggles alone to rebuild her life.


Talia Lugacy





Cast overview, first billed only:
Rosario Dawson ... Maya
Chad Faust ... Jared
Marcus Patrick ... Adrian
Vanessa Ferlito ... Bodega Girl
Jonathan Neil Schneider Jonathan Neil Schneider ... Archaeology Professor (as Jon Schneider)
James A. Stephens ... Professor Byron
Nicole Vicius ... Melanie
Paul Sado ... Downstairs Guy
Scott Bailey ... Upstairs Guy
Tracie Thoms ... Denise
Aisleagh Jackson Aisleagh Jackson ... Construction Girl (as Aislaegh Jackson)
Robert Lehrer Robert Lehrer ... Speaker
Alexie Gilmore ... Seline
Johnathan Tchaikovsky ... Tyler
Colombe Jacobsen-Derstine ... Nadia


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 Her personality changes, she's withdrawn; she graduates and takes a job at a clothing store, staying apart from co-workers.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. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for brutal rape, language, some sexual content and drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


Rosario Dawson's mother Isabel played the bartender, wrote and performed the song "Celia" (played when Maya wakes up and is offered an apple), and was also an associate producer on the film. See more »


Maya: [sexily] You're my kinda guy. My hero. Not the kinda guy to wimp out. You know what it's like to have fun. You know how to let go and fuck the rules. You like things spontaneous, with bite and real risks. I remember that. I thought you were crazy, but you opened my eyes and made me realize we're not so different.
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Alternate Versions

Released on DVD in separate R-rated and NC-17 rated versions. The NC-17 DVD runs for around seven minutes longer. See more »


References The Last House on the Left (1972) See more »


Connected by a String
Written by Sara Lov and Dustin O'Halloran
Performed by Devics
Published by Bug Music Inc
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User Reviews

This felt like a self empowerment film
24 August 2009 | by interestedparty111See all my reviews

Love Rosario Dawson, think she's one of the finest actresses of the modern era.

Descent seems to be more about self-empowerment than anything else. It's the consistent undertone in everything in the film. The dialog is flat, the characters seemingly intentionally bland and one sided. The only consistency is the representation of self-empowerment in the characters and Rosario's journey from self empowerment to loss of empowerment and back again.

Pitching this as a rape classic isn't appropriate, and that's probably why so many people don't enjoy the film. The standard 'rape' audience wouldn't particularly like this film, and maybe that's the point? The film asks more questions than it answers, and it does confront it's target audience, whether they like it or not. There's a compelling relationship between the characters and the target audience and while the film doesn't slap the audience across the face with self-righteous audacity it does engage the viewer for what may or may not be, all the wrong reasons.

Descent is a good film which IMHO is severely under-rated.

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Frequently Asked Questions

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Official Sites:

Official site




English | Spanish

Release Date:

26 April 2007 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Descent See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,411, 12 August 2007

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


| (R-rated)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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