Sanatorium - erotic video by Zero Tolerance - review by Not here


DVD by Zero Tolerance

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Send me to a Sanatorium for watching this!

Sanatorium is a poorly executed film that intends to provoke thought, but fails miserably. The plot is impossible to follow, and the actors are painful to watch. The sex isn't any better, and can induce yawning. To make matters worse, this film is nearly 2 hours long, and includes a lot of imagery that will make you squeamish. Tabitha Stevens gets an A for effort, but sadly that's not nearly enough to redeem Sanatorium.
Interesting costumes. Good camerawork.
Terrible acting. Incredibly confusing plot. Creepy imagery. Boring, formulaic sex. Too much spit!
Rating by reviewer:
extremely useful review

Content / Genre / Audience

Sanatorium is a porn with a plot, meant to not only stimulate you sexually, but mentally as well. Well, I certainly felt mental, but not in the way that I would have liked. For me and my man, this movie just didn't have enough redeeming qualities, and we kept wondering when it would end- for almost 2 hours. While I greatly respect star and producer Tabitha Stevens, and director Gary Orona for trying to break the mold and create a thought provoking adult feature film, I simply did not enjoy it all. The actresses and actors did not suit my tastes, the acting seemed forced, and the sex scenes left me anything but aroused.

I had a hard time really getting the message out of this movie. Apparently, according to Tabitha Stevens, it is supposed to be hard to follow and meant to be watched multiple times. I think it is a bit much to have to watch a porno over and over, or even one more time with a commentary, to understand it. So, I didn't. But here is what I did take from it.

Sanatorium is supposed to be a "visual journey" in which Tabitha Stevens is the narrator. The entire movie is her telling her story to corrupt Senator Grimm, played by Nick Manning, with lots of flashbacks. The opening scene is Senator Grimm speaking out against the porn industry. Tabitha and her female companion, Ashley Roberts are watching this speech on TV. Senator Grimm calls his wife to check in on her, then goes to meet Tabitha and Ashley for a girl on girl show and sex. Tabitha clearly can't stand Senator Grimm, and glares at him frequently, even during the girl on girl scene. This scene is very awkward, and I really enjoy watching girl on girl. It did nothing for me and my man.

Tabitha explains to Senator Grimm how the porn industry put tons of pressure on her to push her limits. In particular, her producer Marcelles tells her she must perform a DP anal scene in order to save a woman named Kelly who is in a straightjacket. To save Kelly, Tabitha visits a shaman and has several "out of body" experiences in the desert that are intertwined with sex scenes, and total WTF? scenes. This is where the absolutely mind-fucking confusion kicked in, and it was at this point that I tried to focus on the sex. That didn't help much either. Anyway, Tabitha's personal journey in the desert allows her to become at peace with herself, and eventually strike back at the people who held her down. Who is Kelly? Why must Tabitha do DP anal porn to save her? I couldn't tell you. Perhaps if I watched the director's commentary, I would take some greater meaning from this, but I really couldn't sit through the torture again just to understand it.

The choppy plot is interjected with several sex scenes- none of which were particularly sexy, and most of which included Tabitha in some way, even if it was just her (creepily) watching. Most of the sex scenes are hetero vaginal sex, but there is one main girl on girl scene (as mentioned above). There is an interracial scene, (Tabitha's first!) a swinging scene with brief girl on girl, lots of messy oral sex, and a POV anal scene. For the most part, the scenes followed a very formulaic pattern of oral with lots of spitting followed by fucking. There wasn't any kink and even the girl on girl and swinging scenes weren't arousing.

While I didn't enjoy this movie in the slightest, I will say that the camera work was very well done and professional. It was certainly visually striking, but a well-shot movie is not enough to captivate me. The sound was also very well done and sounded very high-quality, but the music was rather creepy and overbearing in my opinion, which only added to the ick factor. I will also give credit where credit is due, as the costumes were very nicely done in Sanatorium. They were visually pleasing and there was a wide variety of different style outfits.

The DVD cover says to display in the Couples section, but that definitely didn't apply to me and my man. I really couldn't say exactly who this movie would be geared towards. But, if you like a hard to follow plot in your porn and enjoy non-erotic vanilla sex interjected with creepy images such as a producer inexplicably playing the organ, an equally creepy stuffed bunny, and an overweight troll in the desert, you'll love Sanatorium!

(Yes, this movie is that fucked up.)
    • Interracial scene
    • Mostly hetero
    • Swinging scene


Tabitha Stevens plays the leading role, and to be honest, I couldn't stand her. Her acting was poor at best, and her intense stares and saliva-heavy blow job technique made her sex scenes seem cheesy to me. She is a bit of an older woman, and it is somewhat obvious despite her fit body, which I found to be way too skinny. Her fake breasts were also a huge turn off for me and my man, as they looked extremely unnatural. Unfortunately for me, she was in almost every scene, and I found her to be the opposite of arousing. Of course, this is just my opinion, and many people will find Tabitha to be a very sexy, talented porn actress.

In addition to Tabitha Stevens, Sanatorium stars Nick Manning, Kagney Linn Karter, Sara Sloane, Ashley Roberts, Mark Wood, Ron Jeremy, Francesca Le, Raylene, Tyler Knight, Kris Slater, James Deen, Lux Kassidy, Alex Urban, Ethan Hawk, High Pitch Eric, Matt Bianco, and Teddy Andreadis.

Of this huge cast, my favorite acting performances were by Nick Manning as Senator Grimm, who did a great job playing douche-bag politician, and Ron Jeremy, who had an extremely brief scene as an empathetic porn director.

Sara Sloane and Kagney Linn Karter were the best sexual performers in my opinion, as they were the most attractive and the sex scenes were the only slightly arousing ones in this film. These two scenes weren't enough to make this movie worth sitting through for me, and had little effect on my libido because of the rest of the movie.
    • Bad acting / chemistry
    • Good presentation
    • Interesting costumes

DVD Features

The main menu for Sanatorium is very basic, with the option to watch the movie with or without commentary, and the chapter listing. The background of the menu has flashes of some disturbing scenes along with some imagery from the DVD cover. I wasn't very excited about the menu, which was a sign of things to come.

The bonus disc features 4 bonus scenes- 2 each of Sara Sloan and Kagney Lynn Karter, behind the scenes, an interview with Tabitha Stevens, 2 deleted scenes, a photo gallery, trailers, and "Popshots," a compilation of the cumshots. In all honesty, I found the bonus disc to be far more entertaining than the actual movie, and it is something worth checking out.
    • Commentary options
    • Not very discreet packaging
    • Special features / bonus included


It's rather clear that I don't like Sanatorium. I'm not trying to be mean, but I have honestly seen amateur porn that was better acted and way more arousing. This movie did not turn me or my partner on AT ALL. In fact, we had to fight to stay focused. We had to watch girl on girl porn from our collection afterward in order to get off, so that we could at least feel as if the 2 hours we wasted was slightly redeemed.

Perhaps this just wasn't my style, but I felt as if the quality of this movie was not nearly equal to the amount of effort put into making it. Neither the sex nor the acting was interesting to me, making it almost worthless for me to watch. It simply confused the hell out of me, and caused a few laughs, which is not what I look for in my porn.
This product was provided free of charge to the reviewer. This review is in compliance with the FTC guidelines.
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Do you like this review?
  • Kimbertrees
    Great review!
  • Liz2
    Great review! I don't think I would have had the patience to finish this DVD.
  • Not here
    Thanks guys!

    @Liz2- I definitely don't recommend trying to sit through it if you don't have to.. although you're more than welcome to borrow my copy, haha.
  • TitsMcScandal
    Yeah I wanted to be more brutally honest in my review, but I felt bad because I feel like the only redeeming qualities are the actual production qualities such as camera work or such. Which is pretty awful to say about any Porno.
  • Selective Sensualist
    Great review! We had to break up the viewing of this over a two-night period. I DID like several of the sex scenes, though I could have definitely done without the confusion and extremely disturbing imagery.
  • Not here
    @TitsMcScandal- I thought about being less blunt about how much I disliked it, but realized that there was no reason to sugar coat.. plenty of people DID like it, so it just goes to show how people's tastes differ. But I totally agree with you, which is the main reason why I didn't like it.

    @Selective Sensualist- Thanks! I can see why you had to watch it in two settings! I'm glad you guys did enjoy the sex though, I'm sure it made it a lot more bearable!
  • ToyGeek
    I like confusing movies, but I think I'll skip this one. Thanks for the review.
  • tim1724
    Pretty much exactly how I felt about the movie. (My review's not up yet, for some reason, but it's pretty similar to yours.)
  • gone77
    Yep, that was my entire experience with the movie as well. It's a damn shame really.

    Thanks for the excellent (and funny!) review.
  • Midway through
    Ew, glad I changed my mind last minute when I thought about buying this.
  • Not here
    @ToyGeek- Good choice. This is definitely a bit too confusing!

    @tim1724- I've noticed people either love it or hate it. Clearly we hated it, lol.

    @Kristi- I was so hoping it would be enjoyable. Oh well, can't win em all! Glad you liked the review

    @Middy- I'm glad for you! I would've been even more upset if I had paid for this movie! Good thing for gut feeling.
  • Anorea
    thank you
  • misterazor
    i've heard like comments on this. thanks for making it clear that i should pass.
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