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Speed Racer

By

Source: Catholic News Service

Overly long and only so-so live-action adventure yarn -- based on the 1960s Japanese animated TV series -- about a young race car driver (Emile Hirsch) who, with the loving support of his parents (John Goodman and Susan Sarandon) and girlfriend (Christina Ricci), stands up to the corrupt race sponsor (Roger Allam) and other baddies to compete in the race that killed his big brother. The Wachowski brothers, co-writers and directors, employ colorful animated backgrounds, and the positive family values and nice performances are added pluses, but the alternately chaotic and sentimental plotline will be of most interest to diehard fans of the cartoon, while some of the violence and language are a tad strong for those youngest viewers who might appreciate it most. Imax and conventional. Some intense, but not graphic, action violence, some crass language and expressions, and mild profanity. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is A-II -- adults and adolescents. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG -- parental guidance suggested. Some material may not be suitable for children.

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Leopold Mandic: Western Christians who are working for greater dialogue with Orthodox Christians may be reaping the fruits of Father Leopold’s prayers.
<p>A native of Croatia, Leopold joined the Capuchin Franciscans and was ordained several years later in spite of several health problems. He could not speak loudly enough to preach publicly. For many years he also suffered from severe arthritis, poor eyesight and a stomach ailment.
</p><p>Leopold taught patrology, the study of the Church Fathers, to the clerics of his province for several years, but he is best known for his work in the confessional, where he sometimes spent 13-15 hours a day. Several bishops sought out his spiritual advice.
</p><p>Leopold’s dream was to go to the Orthodox Christians and work for the reunion of Roman Catholicism and Orthodoxy. His health never permitted it. Leopold often renewed his vow to go to the Eastern Christians; the cause of unity was constantly in his prayers.
</p><p>At a time when Pope Pius XII said that the greatest sin of our time is "to have lost all sense of sin," Leopold had a profound sense of sin and an even firmer sense of God’s grace awaiting human cooperation.
</p><p>Leopold, who lived most of his life in Padua, died on July 30, 1942, and was canonized in 1982.</p> American Catholic Blog Heavenly Father, give me the grace to be grateful and to use my gifts and talents to show your love to others so that when they see me, they recognize you living in me and loving them through me. I ask this in Jesus's name, Amen.

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