Imagine a world "balanced so precariously its harmony could be shattered by a whisper"--and then imagine Martin Scorsese putting it on film. Just as Edith Wharton's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of New York high society in the 1870s surprises by its velvet-gloved power, Scorsese impresses by how masterfully he met the challenge of transference. His 1993 film (scripted by Jay Cox) is a beautiful adaptation of the book. Daniel Day-Lewis (pictured) plays a pillar of proper society who's engaged to the most eligible--and most giggly--young woman around (Winona Ryder, left). He takes the nature of his social order for granted until his childhood friend (Michelle Pfeiffer) re-enters his life (Cinemax Sunday at 9:30 a.m.).