NEW YORK (CNS) — Here are some television program and film notes for the week of April 9 with their TV Parental Guidelines ratings if available. They have not been reviewed and therefore are not necessarily recommended by Catholic News Service.
Sunday, April 9, 12:30 – 3:30 a.m. PDT (EWTN) "Solemn Mass of Palm Sunday From Rome With Pope Francis." Pope Francis celebrates the Mass of Palm Sunday, followed by the Angelus, broadcast live from Vatican City. The liturgy will be rerun 5 – 8 p.m. PDT (TV-G — general audience).
Sunday, April 9, 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m. PDT (Showtime) "Lincoln" (2012). Daniel Day-Lewis' bravura performance in the title role is the highlight — but by no means the only asset — of director Steven Spielberg's splendid historical drama. The plot focuses on the Civil War president's passionate yet wily struggle, during the closing days of that conflict, to steer a constitutional amendment abolishing slavery through Congress. Aided by his secretary of state, William Seward (David Strathairn), but distracted by his troubled personal life — Sally Field plays his famously high-strung wife, Mary — Lincoln uses rhetoric to win over his hesitant Cabinet and patronage to woo his opponents. The trajectory of the tale is, by its nature, uplifting, while Lincoln's multifaceted personality — which encompassed idealism, political shrewdness, melancholy, humor and even a few endearing foibles — is vividly illuminated in Tony Kushner's screenplay. The educational value and moral import of the film may make it acceptable for older adolescents. Intense but mostly bloodless battlefield violence, a scene involving severed limbs, cohabitation, about a dozen uses of profanity, racial slurs, a couple of rough terms, occasional crude and crass language. The Catholic News Service classification of the theatrical version was A-III — adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating was PG-13 — parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.
Sunday, April 9, 3 – 5 p.m. PDT (TCM) "The Three Musketeers" (1973). Satiric British version of the Dumas classic zestfully follows the shambling trail of the raw and foolish D'Artagnan (Michael York) in his quest to become one of the Musketeers (Oliver Reed, Richard Chamberlain and Frank Finlay). Directed by Richard Lester, it is an energetic swashbuckler in the grand style, offering an entertaining mix of romantic adventure and slapstick comedy, even if the frenetic humor sometimes wears a bit thin. Some restrained sexual innuendo. The Catholic News Service classification of the theatrical version was A-II — adults and adolescents. The Motion Picture Association of America rating was PG — parental guidance suggested. Some material may not be suitable for children.
Sunday, April 9, 4 – 7 p.m. PDT (AMC) "Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows" (2011). Sprawling, brawling adventure sequel — set in 1891 — in which Robert Downey Jr.'s he-man Holmes and his recently wed sidekick Dr. Watson (Jude Law) battle a conspiracy by evil genius Professor Moriarty (Jared Harris) to destabilize European politics and bring on a general war. The iconic pair is aided in their struggle by a Gypsy fortuneteller (Noomi Rapace) and by Holmes' bon-vivant older brother (Stephen Fry). Director Guy Ritchie's second take on the classic detective fiction of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle downplays old-fashioned sleuthing in favor of a constant flow of confrontations, escapades and escapes. Still, adults with a high degree of tolerance for stylized violence will likely find the proceedings diverting enough. Constant action violence, including a suicide, torture and some glimpses of gore, partial rear and implied full nudity, fleeting sexual humor, a few crass terms. The Catholic News Service classification of the theatrical version was A-III — adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating was PG-13 — parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.
Sunday, April 9, 9 – 11:03 p.m. PDT (History) "The Face of Jesus Uncovered." This special follows a team of experts as they use cutting-edge technology, including 3 – D software, to try to unlock the secrets of one of the world's most famous artifacts, the Shroud of Turin.
Monday, April 10, 5 – 7:15 p.m. PDT (TCM) "Tales of Manhattan" (1942). Neatly paced collection of stories tied to a tuxedo tailcoat worn in turn by an actor (Charles Boyer), a playboy (Cesar Romero), a composer (Charles Laughton), a destitute lawyer (Edward G. Robinson) and a criminal (J. Carrol Naish) who tosses it from a plane loaded with money which a black farmer (Paul Robeson) uses to enrich his community on Christmas Eve. Directed by Julien Duvivier, each of the stories is a small dramatic gem, though the centerpiece is the Robinson episode and the ending packs an emotional wallop. Stylized violence, implicit marital infidelity and some sexual innuendo. The Catholic News Service classification of the theatrical version was A-II — adults and adolescents. Not rated by the Motion Picture Association of America.
Monday, April 10, 9 – 11 p.m. PDT (PBS) "The Great War." First episode of a three-part miniseries examining how World War I transformed America through the stories of those whose participation in the conflict has been largely forgotten. This installment explores the nation's tortured, nearly three-year journey to war. The series continues Tuesday, April 11, and concludes Wednesday, April 12, 9 – 11 p.m. PDT each night. An "American Experience" presentation (TV-PG — parental guidance suggested).
Thursday, April 13, 12:30 – 2:30 a.m. PDT (EWTN) "Chrism Mass in Rome With Pope Francis." Pope Francis celebrates the chrism Mass, live from Rome (TV-G — general audience).
Thursday, April 13, 9 a.m. – 10:30 p.m. PDT (EWTN) "Solemn Mass of the Lord's Supper From Rome." Pope Francis celebrates the Mass of the Lord's Supper (TV-G — general audience).
Friday, April 14, 8:30 a.m.-10:30 a.m. and 9 – 11:30 p.m. PDT (EWTN) "Celebration of the Lord's Passion From Rome." Pope Francis presides over the celebration of the Lord's Passion, live from Vatican City (TV-G — general audience).
Friday, April 14, 3:30 – 5 p.m. PDT (EWTN) "Way of the Cross From Rome." Pope Francis presides over the Stations of the Cross, from the Coliseum in Rome (TV-G — general audience).
Saturday, April 15, 11:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. PDT (EWTN) "Easter Vigil Mass." Pope Francis celebrates the Easter Vigil Mass, live from Rome (TV-G — general audience).