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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Perfume: The Story of a Murderer

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Source: Catholic News Service

Deeply disturbing but hypnotic story set in 18th-century France about an orphan (Ben Wishaw) -- impoverished and abused but gifted with an extraordinary sense of smell -- who apprentices to a perfumer (Dustin Hoffman), after which -- incapable of normal love -- he becomes a serial killer in his quest to capture the scents of his young female victims, ultimately targeting the virginal daughter (Rachel Hurd-Wood) of a wealthy merchant (Alan Rickman) desperate to protect her. Director Tom Tykwer's artful adaptation of Patrick Suskind's 1985 best-seller shows sensitivity in telling a story which could be utterly repellent in other hands, and without justifying the terrible deeds, succeeds in illuminating the protagonist's strange motivation with Christian compassion. Reasonably restrained in its violence, the film will clearly not be to every taste and should be approached with caution. Aberrant violence including murder and bloodshed, partial nudity, an unflattering ecclesiastical character, and a climax involving mass eroticism with long-shot nudity. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is L -- limited adult audience, films whose problematic content many adults would find troubling. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.

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Pope Urban V: In 1362, the man elected pope declined the office. When the cardinals could not find another person among them for that important office, they turned to a relative stranger: the holy person we honor today. 
<p>The new Pope Urban V proved a wise choice. A Benedictine monk and canon lawyer, he was deeply spiritual and brilliant. He lived simply and modestly, which did not always earn him friends among clergymen who had become used to comfort and privilege. Still, he pressed for reform and saw to the restoration of churches and monasteries. Except for a brief period he spent most of his eight years as pope living away from Rome at Avignon, seat of the papacy from 1309 until shortly after his death.
</p><p>He came close but was not able to achieve one of his biggest goals—reuniting the Eastern and Western churches.
</p><p>As pope, Urban continued to follow the Benedictine Rule. Shortly before his death in 1370 he asked to be moved from the papal palace to the nearby home of his brother so he could say goodbye to the ordinary people he had so often helped.</p> American Catholic Blog Jesus does not demand great actions from us but simply surrender and gratitude.

 
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