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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Sorority Row

By
John Mulderig
Source: Catholic News Service

Early on in the cut-rate horror tale "Sorority Row" (Summit), a hard-drinking coed who goes by the poetic moniker Chugs (Margo Harshman) watches via computer cam as her brother Garrett (Matt O'Leary) beds Megan (Audrina Patridge), one of her sorority sisters whom Garrett has drugged to make her more cooperative. This uplifting scene pretty much sets the tone for the old-fashioned exercise in exploitation that follows.

The sketchy plot hinges on the fact that Garrett is Megan's ex-boyfriend whom she dumped for cheating. Out for revenge, she and some of her other sisters—Cassidy (Briana Evigan), Jessica (Leah Pipes), Ellie (Rumer Willis) and Claire (Jamie Chung)—have concocted a prank that involves convincing Garrett that the supposed date-rape pills he gave Megan (in fact just vitamins supplied by the girls) have poisoned and killed her.

For reasons too boring to detail, the trick goes terribly wrong, and Megan ends up really and most sincerely dead. Garrett and the girls agree to conceal the mishap by dumping Megan's body and claiming she simply disappeared. But their coverup starts to unravel several months later as the female members of the guilty group fall prey, one by one, to a black-robed slasher.

As directed by Stewart Hendler, the gruesome proceedings are interspersed with "Animal House"-style high jinks, gratuitous nudity (predictably, the stalker claims one of his victims in the sorority showers) and the early stages of a number of utterly promiscuous sexual encounters.

The film contains frequent bloody violence, brief nongraphic nonmarital sexual activity, upper female and rear nudity, a couple of profanities, and much rough and crude language. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is O—morally offensive. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R—restricted; under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.

Mulderig is on the staff of the Office for Film & Broadcasting of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.


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Jeanne Jugan: 
		<p>Born in northern France during the French Revolution—a time when congregations of women and men religious were being suppressed by the national government, Jeanne would eventually be highly praised in the French academy for her community's compassionate care of elderly poor people.</p>
		<p>When Jeanne was three and a half years old, her father, a fisherman, was lost at sea. Her widowed mother was hard pressed to raise her eight children (four died young) alone. At the age of 15 or 16, Jeanne became a kitchen maid for a family that not only cared for its own members, but also served poor, elderly people nearby. Ten years later, Jeanne became a nurse at the hospital in Le Rosais. Soon thereafter she joined a third order group founded by St. John Eudes (August 19).</p>
		<p>After six years she became a servant and friend of a woman she met through the third order. They prayed, visited the poor and taught catechism to children. After her friend's death, Jeanne and two other women continued a similar life in the city of Saint-Sevran. In 1839, they brought in their first permanent guest. They began an association, received more members and more guests. Mother Marie of the Cross, as Jeanne was now known, founded six more houses for the elderly by the end of 1849, all staffed by members of her association—the Little Sisters of the Poor. By 1853 the association numbered 500 and had houses as far away as England.</p>
		<p>Abbé Le Pailleur, a chaplain, had prevented Jeanne's reelection as superior in 1843; nine year later, he had her assigned to duties within the congregation, but would not allow her to be recognized as its founder. He was removed from office by the Holy See in 1890. </p>
		<p>By the time Pope Leo XIII gave her final approval to the community's constitutions in 1879, there were 2,400 Little Sisters of the Poor. Jeanne died later that same year, on August 30. Her cause was introduced in Rome in 1970, and she was beatified in 1982 and canonized in 2009. </p>
		<p> </p>
American Catholic Blog The joy of the Lord is our strength. Therefore, each of us will accept a life of poverty in cheerful trust. We will offer cheerful obedience from our inward joy. We will minister to Christ in the distressing disguise of the poor with cheerful devotion. If our work is done with joy, we will have no reason to be unhappy.

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