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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Groomsmen, The

By

Source: Catholic News Service

Intermittently engaging New York drama about a writer (Edward Burns, who also directs) wrestling with anxiety over his impending marriage to his pregnant girlfriend (Brittany Murphy) during a week, leading up to the wedding, of male bonding with his groomsmen (Jay Mohr, Matthew Lillard, Donal Logue and John Leguizamo), each of whom is dealing with personal dilemmas as well. As with past Burns' films, the movie -- set in his usual working-class, Irish-Catholic milieu -- explores themes of family and friendship, love and commitment, relationships and responsibility, but while it has moments of honest emotion, the talky script lacks focus and much of the banter is banal. Pervasive rough and crude language, some profanity, an uncritical view of homosexuality, tacit approval of premarital living arrangements, several vulgar gestures, fleeting rear nudity, a scene in a strip club, and a crass scene of urination. 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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Augustine of Hippo: A Christian at 33, a priest at 36, a bishop at 41: Many people are familiar with the biographical sketch of Augustine of Hippo, sinner turned saint. But really to get to know the man is a rewarding experience. 
<p>There quickly surfaces the intensity with which he lived his life, whether his path led away from or toward God. The tears of his mother, the instructions of Ambrose and, most of all, God himself speaking to him in the Scriptures redirected Augustine’s love of life to a life of love. </p><p>Having been so deeply immersed in creature-pride of life in his early days and having drunk deeply of its bitter dregs, it is not surprising that Augustine should have turned, with a holy fierceness, against the many demon-thrusts rampant in his day. His times were truly decadent—politically, socially, morally. He was both feared and loved, like the Master. The perennial criticism leveled against him: a fundamental rigorism. </p><p>In his day, he providentially fulfilled the office of prophet. Like Jeremiah and other greats, he was hard-pressed but could not keep quiet. “I say to myself, I will not mention him,/I will speak in his name no more./But then it becomes like fire burning in my heart,/imprisoned in my bones;/I grow weary holding it in,/I cannot endure it” (Jeremiah 20:9).</p> American Catholic Blog Pope Francis said, “The Church gives us the life of faith in Baptism: that is the moment in which she gives birth to us as children of God, the moment she gives us the life of God, she engenders us as a mother would.”

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