The Greatest opens with the kind of electric, soft-focus virginity-losing that can only exist in a cinematic universe: Tentative, joyous, nonawkward, and 18 years old, Rose and Bennett have only known each other for one afternoon. But they've been in love since their eyes first met, four years earlier, in English class. Can you even HANDLE? Awwwww. Now, on the last day of school, they speak. They pour themselves into one another's beautiful young eyeballs. They do it. A baby is made.

Then—OOPS! Literally on the postcoital drive home that very night, BENNETT IS RENDERED TOTALLY DECEASED BY A CAR CRASH. Sigh. So it's that kind of movie.

The Greatest is about grief. Bennett's parents, Grace and Allen (Susan Sarandon and Pierce Brosnan, who both under- and overdoes it), are busy navigating their pain and their preexisting marital problems when Rose shows up on their doorstep and announces she's pregnant and needs some help (because "my mom just started rehab"—creak, groan). Grace hates Rose. Rose likes everyone. Everyone is fucked-up. The movie is, from time to time, affecting.

There are good things about The Greatest: Carey Mulligan's wonderfully sunny face, Sarandon's utter unfuckwithability. The plot is doled out in lumps—scene upon scene of Crazy Stuff Grieving Parents Do. Grace walks the house at night shrieking: "Where's my baby? Somebody help me find my baby! He was right here and I can't find him!" Allen loses his shit when his remaining son is out of his sight. Grace stares creepily at babies in the grocery store. Overall, the script is so hackneyed and predictable (Grace craved peanut butter and bananas when she was pregnant, can you imagine anything so wacky!?), The Greatest feels like watching paper dolls in a paper-doll world: their bodies cut from a psychiatric reference book about grief, and their outfits cut from Chicken Soup for the Souls of People Whose Kids Died, and their little faces cut from the Lifetime Network's Confidential Employee Handbook on Jerking the Tears Out of Sentimental Ladies' Cry-Holes. (Fun fact: Their hair is real human hair [high quality!].) The Greatest is sweet but ultimately weightless. At least Lifetime knows it's silly. recommended