Archbishop Charles Chaput is crushing on “The Giver.” Two mitres up. Or something.

…One of the most popular youth and young adult novels of the past 20 years — Lois Lowry’s Newberry Award-winning The Giver — comes to movie screens tomorrow, August 15, thanks to Walden Media. Walden is the same family-friendly production and distribution company that released The Chronicles of Narnia films. Lowry’s book has sold more than 10 million copies.

Some parents have found the novel too troubling or controversial for young children because of its subject matter. The story portrays a tightly controlled society of the future that runs on “Sameness,” where memories and strong emotions are discouraged, conscience is virtually unknown, and defective infants, the elderly and dissenters are methodically sent to “Elsewhere” — in other words, killed. One young man, chosen by the community to train as its “Receiver of Memories,” is repelled by the secrets at the heart of the utopia. He sets in motion an awakening the human spirit.

This is a wonderful film. Nothing in the movie version of The Giver will offend a family. Just the opposite. It’s an intelligent, absorbing, beautifully crafted film everyone should see. This is a major production of a great story, well above standard “family” fare in quality, rendered by an excellent cast — Meryl Streep, Jeff Bridges, Katie Holmes, Taylor Swift and others. It shouldn’t be missed.

Hmmm. I was thinking about taking my kids to see the Expendables 3 but maybe now we’ll see this instead. (Just kidding about the Expendables part.)

*subhead*Movie review.*subhead*