Rated 3.0

As an old woman (Vanessa Redgrave) lies dying, attended by her two grown daughters (Natasha Richardson, Toni Collette), her mind turns back to her youth, when (played by Claire Danes) she fell in love at the wedding of her best friend (played in flashbacks by Mamie Gummer and in present day by Gummer’s mother, Meryl Streep). The script by Michael Cunningham and Susan Minot (from Minot’s novel) has a soap-opera glossiness of the type once found in “women’s pictures” before they devolved into “chick flicks.” The story is interesting without being compelling, with more than a trace of high-tone schmaltz, and directed with tame stateliness by Lajos Koltai. The film’s chief asset is its powerhouse cast—including Eileen Atkins and Glenn Close, plus Patrick Wilson, Hugh Dancy and Barry Bostwick among the men.