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Source: Catholic News Service

Artful but studied story of a dying woman (Vanessa Redgrave) recalling the Newport wedding of her best friend (Mamie Gummer) years before, where, as a maid of honor (now played by Claire Danes) she had a romance with a young doctor (Patrick Wilson), an encounter with unexpectedly tragic consequences. Director Lajos Koltai's rendering of Susan Minot's novel is handsomely filmed, with predictably fine performances by an incredible cast that also includes Meryl Streep, Glenn Close, Natasha Richardson, Toni Collette, Hugh Dancy and Eileen Atkins, but the narrative often feels contrived, despite some keen observations on mortality, mother-daughter dynamics, and how the actions of one generation can affect the next. An out-of-wedlock encounter, post-coital tableau, premarital pregnancy, innuendo, brief abortion discussion, alcohol abuse, some profanity and rough language, divorce, subliminal same-sex attraction and a car accident. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 -- parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.

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Catherine of Alexandria: According to the <i>Legend of St. Catherine</i>, this young woman converted to Christianity after receiving a vision. At the age of 18, she debated 50 pagan philosophers. Amazed at her wisdom and debating skills, they became Christians—as did about 200 soldiers and members of the emperor’s family. All of them were martyred. 
<p>Sentenced to be executed on a spiked wheel, Catherine touched the wheel and it shattered. She was beheaded. Centuries later, angels are said to have carried the body of St. Catherine to a monastery at the foot of Mt. Sinai. </p><p>Devotion to her spread as a result of the Crusades. She was invoked as the patroness of students, teachers, librarians and lawyers. Catherine is one of the 14 Holy Helpers, venerated especially in Germany and Hungary.</p> American Catholic Blog We exist because God is infinitely beautiful, infinitely good, and overflowing with a love that seeks to share itself. When he made us and placed us in this glittering created world, it was an act of pure generosity.

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