Mary Valle has high marks for "God Is the Bigger Elvis," the new documentary about the life and vocation of Dolores Hart:
"God Is the Bigger Elvis," airing on HBO April 5, is a recently Academy Award-nominated documentary about former actress Dolores Hart, who left a becoming-major career in Hollywood to become a cloistered nun. Hart, who gave Elvis his first onscreen kiss and costarred with him in two of his pictures, seemingly left “it” all. She was beautiful, talented and on the verge of big things, having already played opposite major mid-century dreamboats like Warren Beatty and Montgomery Clift and the aforementioned King of Rock, who liked to spend quiet moments on the set perusing the Good Book with Miss Hart.
Dolores, who attended Mass every morning as a young actress in Hollywood and prayed to get roles she wanted, had first visited Regina Laudis, an abbey of cloistered nuns in Connecticut, after a tiring run on Broadway. When a friend suggested she recuperate for a few days in the quiet of an abbey, Dolores said she wasn’t interested and furthermore, didn’t want anything to do with nuns. Her friend persisted, so Dolores went. Something caught her there, and she continued to visit periodically, even bringing up a possible vocation with the then-abbess, who told her she was too young, to go back and keep acting.
A few years later when Dolores was about to get married in an Edith Head-designed gown, a letter arrived from Regina Laudis. It said if she was still considering entering the convent, it would be a good time to do so. So Dolores did. She left the glamour and fame and handsome costars. She left her fiancé, the steadfast Catholic architect Don Robinson, who had already drawn up plans for their home. She left everything that everyone is supposed to want, everything that is supposed to make one happy. She had it all, so to speak, and left it all.
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