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Danielle Steel’s No Greater Love

Filmed in Montreal and Los Angeles by the Cramer Co. in association with NBC Prods. Executive producer, Douglas S. Cramer; producer, Christopher Morgan; supervising producer, Dennis Hammer; director, Richard Heffron; writer, Carmen Culver, based on the novel by Danielle Steel; camera, Pierre Mignot; editor, Michael S. Murphy; production designer, Normand Sarrazin; sound, Michel Charron; music, Billy Goldenberg. TX:Cast: Kelly Rutherford, Chris Sarandon, Nicholas Campbell, Daniel Hugh Kelly, Michael Landes, Gina Philips, Simon MacCorkindale, Christopher Fuller, Susan Hogan, Daniel Pilon, Sarah Freeman, Hayden Christensen , Polly Shannon, Ryan and Alex Floyd. The first vidpic of the year is the perfect antidote for women (and possibly, some men) who have suffered through an afternoon of football and beer. There are plenty of suds in "Danielle Steel's No Greater Love," but they're all of the soap variety. As luck would have it, the return voyage is on the Titanic, which sinks before the telepic's first commercial break, leaving plucky 20-year-old Edwina alone to raise her surviving younger brother George, and sister Alexis, and also run the family business when George wants no part of it.

Filmed in Montreal and Los Angeles by the Cramer Co. in association with NBC Prods. Executive producer, Douglas S. Cramer; producer, Christopher Morgan; supervising producer, Dennis Hammer; director, Richard Heffron; writer, Carmen Culver, based on the novel by Danielle Steel; camera, Pierre Mignot; editor, Michael S. Murphy; production designer, Normand Sarrazin; sound, Michel Charron; music, Billy Goldenberg. TX:Cast: Kelly Rutherford, Chris Sarandon, Nicholas Campbell, Daniel Hugh Kelly, Michael Landes, Gina Philips, Simon MacCorkindale, Christopher Fuller, Susan Hogan, Daniel Pilon, Sarah Freeman, Hayden Christensen , Polly Shannon, Ryan and Alex Floyd. The first vidpic of the year is the perfect antidote for women (and possibly, some men) who have suffered through an afternoon of football and beer. There are plenty of suds in “Danielle Steel’s No Greater Love,” but they’re all of the soap variety. As luck would have it, the return voyage is on the Titanic, which sinks before the telepic’s first commercial break, leaving plucky 20-year-old Edwina alone to raise her surviving younger brother George, and sister Alexis, and also run the family business when George wants no part of it.

While clutching to the memory of her drowned husband, Edwina places raising her family above any possible romance for herself. Meanwhile, George (Michael Landes), who — honest to God — always wanted to be a director, falls in love with a producer’s daughter (Polly Shannon), and 17-year-old Alexis (Gina Philips) is spirited away by 40ish lothario Malcolm Stone (Nicholas Campbell). No wonder Edwina has no time to fall in love.

Not that she has any lack of suitors — among them family attorney Ben Jones (Daniel Hugh Kelly), Broadway producer Sam Horowitz (Chris Sarandon) and married Londoner Patrick Kelly (Simon MacCorkindale).

All three are men of means who could help her raise her siblings, but Edwina resists the advances of Ben and Sam, but eventually lets her hair down (literally) for Patrick. Even though he makes it clear he can’t marry her, she’s grateful for the one-night stand: “I never thought that I could love again — you’ve shown me that I can; you’ve shown me how.”

Storyline speaks for itself. Act-ing won’t win any awards, but generally is adequate, and director Richard Heffron, director of photography Pierre Mignot and production designer Normand Sarrazin get a good look from locations in Montreal and aboard the Queen Mary.

Carmen Culver’s script is often a hoot, but true to the genre and with occasional flashes of wit. (Edwina to Patrick, curious as to why she stays in the stateroom en route to London: “I don’t like ships very much.” Patrick: “Why?” Edwina: “It’s a long story.” Patrick: “It’s a long voyage.”)

Sensibilities seem askew: George frets that he can never marry Helen Horowitz. The worry comes not because of ethnic considerations that would have arisen in those days and in that company, but because “people” would think that he was marrying her for her father’s money and showbiz contacts.

Edwina solves his problem and, eventually, those of bratty Alexis and herself.

Danielle Steel's No Greater Love

(Mon. (1), 9-11 p.m., NBC)

Production: Boston newspaper man Bert Winfield (Daniel Pilon) has taken his family to London to celebrate the marriage of eldest daughter Edwina (Kelly Rutherford) to Charles Fitzgerald (Christopher Fuller).

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