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Source: Catholic News Service

Picturesque but utterly vapid 19th-century period piece about a French ex-soldier (Michael Pitt) sent to Japan by a silk merchant (Alfred Molina) to purchase healthy eggs to restore the local silk business ravaged by a silkworm-egg epidemic; he becomes obsessed by a concubine (Sei Ashina) of the baron (Koji Yakusho) with whom he does business, while his schoolteacher wife (Keira Knightley) waits patiently behind. Francois Girard directs the story at an excruciatingly slow pace, and Pitt's droning narration -- he and the other French characters speak with flat American accents -- together with dialogue that is less than inspired create a general tedium unredeemed by a final plot twist. Upper female nudity, nongraphic sexual encounters, adultery theme, a restrained brothel scene and the image of a hanging corpse. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.

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Francis Borgia: Today's saint grew up in an important family in 16th-century Spain, serving in the imperial court and quickly advancing in his career. But a series of events—including the death of his beloved wife—made Francis Borgia rethink his priorities. He gave up public life, gave away his possessions and joined the new and little-known Society of Jesus. 
<p>Religious life proved to be the right choice. He felt drawn to spend time in seclusion and prayer, but his administrative talents also made him a natural for other tasks. He helped in the establishment of what is now the Gregorian University in Rome. Not long after his ordination he served as political and spiritual adviser to the emperor. In Spain, he founded a dozen colleges. </p><p>At 55, Francis was elected head of the Jesuits. He focused on the growth of the Society of Jesus, the spiritual preparation of its new members and spreading the faith in many parts of Europe. He was responsible for the founding of Jesuit missions in Florida, Mexico and Peru. </p><p>Francis Borgia is often regarded as the second founder of the Jesuits. He died in 1572 and was canonized 100 years later.</p> American Catholic Blog Dare to love and to be a real friend. The love you give and receive is a reality that will lead you closer and closer to God as well as to those whom God has given you to love. —Henri J.M. Nouwen

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