While in her deathbed, Ann Lord repeats the name Harris and recalls the day in the 50s when she was an aspirant singer and traveled from New York to be the maid of honor of her wealthy friend Lila Wittenborns wedding in Newport. Ann Grant is welcomed by Lilas alcoholic and reckless brother Buddy in the Wittenborns cottage at seaside and he tells her that his sister is in love with their friend and servant Harris Arden, who fought in the war and has graduated in medicine. Later the bride-to-be confesses her true feelings about Harris to Ann. However, when Ann meets Harris, she has a crush on him and they have a brief affair. Meanwhile Anns daughters, the insecure and unstable Nina Mars and the happy wife and mother Constance Haverford, are worried with their mother and have differences to be resolved.
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I totally do not understand people giving this movie anything but 5 stars. I was so moved by this movie the first time I saw it, and watch this movie at least 5 or 6 times a year. I wish they could have made this movie longer, and gone into the people's lifes in a more in depth manner, which is my only criticism. I place this movie right up there with the Notebook, The Vow, and all of those other wonderful and yummy love stories. This movie hits every emotion, and really makes me think every time I watch it, about my own life, and "my mistakes." Were they mistakes? Or is it just how life plays out? Is it how your life should be? Or is it the choice that we make? Who knows if we ever will know. All I know, is when I'm feeling low, and want some good alone time, I reach for this movie time and time again.
Wow, what a waste of acting talent. My husband and I sat there, boththinking, this has to get better, these actresses are too good to havewasted their time on this crap. Unattractive characters, hackneyedscript, and listless pacing make for a long two hours. I actuallycouldn't hack it and left to do the grocery shopping (cat litter beingmore appealing than this film). The husband stayed and confirmed thatit didn't get better--by the time Buddy is killed, you were wishingthey all would get hit by a car and end their miserable lives. It wouldbe infinitely more entertaining. Beautiful scenery and costumes can'tkeep this one alive.
In its pursuit of superior craftsmanship and high-minded lyricism, Evening constantly risks sliding down the slippery slope into inept sentimentality and self-caricature.
It's quite an achievement to get such a group of esteemed actresses together for something of such little consequence.
First, I am a guy and not terribly fond of "chick flicks." This moviedoes not, to quote another person's comment, have so much estrogen thata guy can't enjoy it too.In fact, this movie is one that will stay with you for awhileregardless of your sex. It has themes that apply to all of us. We live,love and die, and we have an impact on the lives of those we touch -probably much more than we realize."Evening" is the story of such a life, told from the vantage point ofthe end and told so skillfully that it captures our attention andimagination. The cast is top notch, and in this film they are at theirbest.You owe it to yourself to give this one a try.
The handsome period design strives for authenticity, yet when the wedding party listens to a recording of 'I've Got the World on a String,' we don't hear Sinatra or Peggy Lee but 21st century neo-swingster Michael Buble.
The performances are terrific, but they are hampered by an overly convoluted script that takes a very simple concept and complicates it with a back-and-forth temporal flow and an overabundance of characters and relationships.
At first you can't believe that so much talent has been assembled. But by the end of this deathbed reverie you can't believe what they've done with that abundance.
While it teeters on the brink of mawkish melodrama for quite some time, this film ultimately delivers the goods, ably assisted by the arrival of Meryl Streep onscreen.
Not see Evening? It's like having to say no to a Jane Austen adaptation.
This review is from: Evening (DVD) Although complex and difficult to follow, this movie was the most romantic one I have ever seen. A very mature portrayal of the definition of true love between a man and a woman. There were portions where I had to fast forward to avoid nudity and intimate situations. Except for that I would have given the movie a 5 star rating.
Things to like about this movie:Vanessa Redgrave. Toni Collette.The house in Newport. The 50's wardrobe.The scene about "the note." Poor Buddy. (Stop drinking!)Things not to like about this movie:The poorly developed love story between Ann and Harris.The poorly developed character of Harris.Not enough Meryl Streep.Natasha Richardson's teeth were distracting (Get those veneers reworked girl!)Having to listen to Claire Danes sing.Glenn Close was scary. (I'm sorry to say that.)Finally, I have to say that I REALLY wanted to like this movie. But, I didn't quite like it as much as I thought I would. Too bad, with the wonderful cast and setting they had to work with.
Evening is a terribly refined, painstakingly composed study in aristocratic angst that audiences will be hard-pressed to believe a word of.
Too many good actresses lost in a lousy story with too many loose ends. Merryl Streep who is one of my favorite actress made a cameo appereance for one minute and left . what a waste.
Who was Bobby? I saw the movie twice and don't remember a Bobby. Therewas an extra named Bob once I saw the credits here on IMDb. Whathappened to Bobby.I wonder if this person means Buddy played by Hugh Dancy. But if theywatched the movie how could they get the name wrong? What does this nowbring up. A person gets a major character's name wrong and passes itoff as a fake character? I don't get it. I don't think they saw it. It's very sad when comment on movies oranything that they haven't watched and try to pass that along and thenvote for it. Maybe Bob, an extra, died at some point, but I didn't seeit in the movie.
If you cannot enjoy a chick flick, stop right now. If, however, youenjoy films that illustrate complex characters and provideextraordinary acting, read on.Ann Grant Lord is dying. Her two daughters arrive to be at her bedside.Ann begins talking about people from her past of whom the daughters areunaware, and they question as to whether these lost acquaintances arereal or imagined. They come to realize that these people from theirmother's past are, indeed, real.The story shifts, basically, between 1953 and circa 2000 with a fewglimpses at Ann's life between those years. It was in 1953 that Ann metthe love of her life and experienced her life's greatest tragedy.One of Ann's two best friends from college, Lila, is being married.Ann's other best friend is Lila's brother, Buddy. Lila and Buddy arethe children of a rich Newport family, whereas Ann is a cabaret singerliving in Greenwich Village who wants to be a free spirit but is stillbound by many of those 1950's conventions.Soon after Ann arrives to be maid of honor at Lila's wedding, she meetsthe person who will become the pivotal character in the lives of thethree - Harris. He is the adult son of a former servant of the familywho grew up with Lila and Buddy and has gone on to become a physicianin a small New England town. Ann immediately becomes enamored of Harriswhich adds a complication to the fact that Lila has always been in lovewith Harris and continues to be. Buddy, also, is in love with Harris,but being 1953, he has redirected that homosexual desire for Harris tohis good friend, Ann for he cannot admit to himself that he has asexual craving for another man. Buddy exhibits his inner frustrationoutwardly by being the alcoholic, wise-cracking bad boy of the family -much to the chagrin of his very proper and uptight parents.Needless to say, all of these expressed and repressed emotions lead totragedy - after all this is a chick flick.In the present time, Ann's daughters have become distant from theirmother and are suffering their own life realizations and doubts.Constance is working to emotional exhaustion trying to keep up her rollas perfect mother and wife. Nina, having always felt inferior, cannotmaintain a relationship.Stir all of these relationships into a span of fifty years, and you getan intriguing look at society, its values, and its effects upon thepersonalities and actions of the complex people involved.All of the acting in Evening is excellent, but there are someextraordinary performances and scenes - along with two unique familyrelationships - that make this film so very, very special.Claire Danes plays the 1950's Ann, and she does it in a style thatclearly shows an intelligent woman of those times who is conflicted bywhat she is supposed to do as opposed to what she wants to do. Herperformance is not easily forgettable.Vanessa Redgrave plays the dying Ann whose mind shifts from thepresent, to the past, to flights of fantasy, and of course, Redgravepulls it all off with sterling style.Natasha Richardson - Redgrave's real daughter - plays Ann's daughter,Constance, in the film. The scenes between this real life mother anddaughter playing fictional mother and daughter are an insightful treatto watch.Toni Collette plays Ann's other daughter, Nina. Nina spends a good dealof her time being depressed and feeling sorry for herself whileshutting out a good man who loves her as well as her mother and sister.Collette is perfect for a part such as this, but I have never seen hergive a bad or unbelievable performance no matter what part she plays.Mamie Gummer plays 1950's Lila and shows us a woman even moreconflicted of her expected role in life than her good friend, Ann. Sheis very good.Meryl Streep - Gummer's mother - plays present day Lila. What is thereto say about Meryl Streep other than she always gives an insightful andrewarding performance.Director Lajos Koltai states in the DVD extras that he sought out GlennClose to play the relatively small part of Lila's mother because hefelt she was the only actress he could think of to play one scene inthe film. He certainly was right, and Close's performance in that onescene etches it in your mind. All the other scenes in which Close isLila's very proper mother, and you get another performance to treasure.There are three other scenes in the film, combined with the onefeaturing Close described above, that make the whole movie worthwatching. On Lila's wedding day, Ann comes into her room and crawlsinto to bed with her friend to discuss Lila's misforgivings about herupcoming wedding to a man she clearly does not love. This scene isrepeated fifty years later when Lila comes and crawls into bed with herdying friend Ann to talk about the lives they have lived. In thislatter scene, Streep and Redgrave are enthralling.The other memorable scene - at least to me - is when Buddy declares hislove for Ann. Hugh Dancy as Buddy gives us a heartbreaking performanceof a young man torn apart by his conflicting sexual feelings. Hisperformance is superior.Chick flick? Yes. A very special film with unbelievable acting,directing, and scenery? Definitely. I cannot recommend Evening toomuch.
If you are not an old woman, you will not like this movie. It was just terrible. The pacing was slow, the plot weak and the end, which I sat through the movie thinking would be a good sad payoff wasn't. Point of this review, if you are a guy, do not take the 2 hours of your life to watch this movie.
I totally understand how the reviews are differing to such extremes. This was not a "For Public Consumption" film. It incorporates so many different levels of belief. The film is beautiful to look at, the cast is amazing & the content goes far beyond what most American consumers will accept as an escape from their mundane lives...The film haunts for quite a while. This one makes my favorites list...Plus, Claire Danes is super hot :)
I'm so glad I saw this movie despite the reviews. The framework of the script is ingenious - for those who want tight plot lines with bows at the end - this is not your film. But for those who want to take a trip down the stream of consciousness of a dying woman reconsidering her life choices - this is a GREAT film. I loved the way the film blended in the past and present - in one seamless line -- superbly played by Vanessa Redgrave. She cast a spell on me from her first few lines. She should have won an Oscar for her performance. As the director says in the commentary section - he saw the room without walls - because the characters mind had no walls between past and present. Beautifully and expertly directed and acted by all -- and many human moments in which you will see your own life reflected. What a gem. See it and be prepared to float along and you won't be disappointed but instead incredibly moved by our all too frail humanness - in the evening time.
The movie plays out slowly, but it's not an action movie, so that's okay. It's all about emotions with deep connections between the characters.