Critics Consensus

Beautifully filmed, but decidedly dull, Evening is a collossal waste of a talented cast.



Total Count: 129


Audience Score

User Ratings: 123,706
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Evening Photos

Movie Info

"Evening" is a deeply emotional film that illuminates the timeless love which binds mother and daughter--seen through the prism of one mother's life as it crests with optimism, navigates a turning point, and ebbs to its close. Overcome by the power of memory, Ann Lord reveals a long-held secret to her concerned daughters: Constance, a contented wife and mother, and Nina, a restless single woman. Both are bedside when Ann calls out for the man she loved more than any other. But who is this "Harris," wonder her daughters, and "what is he to our mother?" While Constance and Nina try to take stock of Ann's life and their own lives, their mother is tended to by a night nurse as she journeys in her mind back to a summer weekend some 50 years ago, when she was Ann Grant--a young woman who has come from New York City to be maid of honor at the high-society Newport wedding of her dearest friend from college, Lila Wittenborn. The bride-to-be is jittery and turns to her maid of honor rather than her own mother for support. Ann stays close to her friend, yet is even closer to Lila's irrepressible brother Buddy. Unexpected feelings surge forth once Ann meets wedding guest Harris Arden, a lifelong friend and intimate of the Wittenborn family. Ann's love for Harris will change her life, and those of her daughters, forever.

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Claire Danes
as Ann Grant
Toni Collette
as Nina Mars
Vanessa Redgrave
as Ann Grant Lord
Patrick Wilson
as Harris Arden
Hugh Dancy
as Buddy Wittenborn
Natasha Richardson
as Constance Haverford
Mamie Gummer
as Young Lila Wittenborn
Eileen Atkins
as Mrs. Brown
Meryl Streep
as Lila Wittenborn
Glenn Close
as Mrs. Wittenborn
Barry Bostwick
as Mr. Wittenborn
David Furr
as Ralph Haverford
Sarah Viccellio
as Lizzie Tull
Cheryl Lynn Bowers
as Peach Howze
Timothy Kiefer
as Carl Ross
Jon De Vries
as Deaver Ross
Chris Stack
as Phil Mars
Maxine Prescott
as Great Aunt Roo
Margaret Coen
as Constance Age 4
Annie Wardwell
as Nina Age 4
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News & Interviews for Evening

Critic Reviews for Evening

All Critics (129) | Top Critics (44)

  • The performances are oddly muted, as if the screenplay refuses to allow a fine cast full rein. But those who loved the book can be assured that it has been translated faithfully enough to the screen.

    Sep 21, 2007 | Rating: 2/5
  • An affected and overwrought adaptation of Susan Minot's novel about a dying woman's memories of a complicated romantic incident in her youth.

    Sep 21, 2007 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • Evening is a slow burner, so slow in fact the credits roll before it ever gets going.

    Sep 21, 2007 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

    Laura Bushell

    Top Critic
  • It's a very odd film that can discuss heart-blackening guilt, loveless marriage, pain and regret only to taper off into a dry-eyed ending.

    Sep 21, 2007 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • The film disintegrates into an indulgent succession of intense, fawning exchanges that overwhelm Minot's thin and monotonous tale.

    Sep 21, 2007 | Rating: 2/6 | Full Review…

    Amy Simmons

    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • Even as I admired most of the performances -- and I do stress most of them -- I found myself searching in vain for one character to care about.

    Jul 6, 2007

Audience Reviews for Evening

  • Sep 20, 2011
    On her deathbed and filled with regret, a woman recalls a brief romance with a doctor while her daughters contemplate their lives. Though the film is slow in places, I found it profound and profoundly moving. Ultimately, it supports domestic life, but it does so by denouncing regret -- a journey that resonates with me. Ann, fading away to her death, wonders how life would have turned out if she had pursued a man with whom she had a one night stand years ago just as her daughter wonders whether to stay with the man who impregnated her; it is perhaps too convenient that these storylines so flawlessly intertwine, but as the stories unfold, I forgot about the convenience and concentrated on the theme. There isn't an outstanding performance in the film, save possibly for Toni Collette as the uncertain daughter, but everyone is solid. I did think that the romance between Ann and Harris should have been more passionate or more deeply connected; as it is, I wonder if a one night stand is really worth a lifetime of regret. Overall, I enjoyed <i>Evening</i>, a poignant drama with timeless themes.
    Jim H Super Reviewer
  • Oct 03, 2009
    A very emotional and heartwrenching movie that was filled sadness and tragedy. Not just with the dying mother, but how no one really ended up with who they really wanted or how Buddy dies...after being rejected. Besides her daughters, did anyone really end up happy? With the life they wanted? i just needed a little more happiness. But on the other hand, at least they didn't try to have a typical hollywood ending like most movies do. This movie is pretty typical of what real life would be. But still, I needed a happy ending. Just to make up for all the sadness throughout it. The cast did a wonderful job, very well acted, very believable. And its a pretty good story too. Some of the scenes were very beautifully shot. I liked the backdrops. However the movie kind of dragged on. I mean its a good movie, but nothing that will stick with me for years to come. Good, but kind of forgettable. Still worth a watch I guess.
    m h Super Reviewer
  • Jul 28, 2009
    A quiet film with a dynamite cast that reads like a Hollywood Who's Who about a woman at the end of her life reminiscing about what might have been. The film had a surreal quality to it as Ann (Vanessa Redgrave) drifted in and out of consciousness, sometimes dreaming and remembering the past, and sometimes hallucinating in the present, and sometimes interacting with the people who come and go. Two performances stand out for this viewer. Clare Danes, as the young Ann, was marvelous and re-established my belief in her beauty and talent. She is growing up good! And Toni Collette as the younger of Ann's two daughters turned in a very poignant portrayal of a woman making important decisions about her life as she watches her mother fade away. Of special note: Natasha Richardson, who was actually Redgraves' daughter, played her other daughter in what was probably their final film together. Some plot devices tended to be a little too pat, but overall a thoughtful film. And the cast! How many films can boast hiring Meryl Streep and Glenn Close for small supporting roles? Emotional without being sappy or overly sentimental.
    Mark A Super Reviewer
  • Jan 13, 2009
    As Ann (Vanessa Redgrave) reflects on one beautiful and life changing weekend with ehr true love, her daughters (Toni Colette and Natasha Richardson) come to their own understanding about the power of the past and the unbreakable bonds between mothers and daughters and family and the loves of their lives. <a href="http://s420.photobucket.com/albums/pp286/ladypink_2009/?action=view¤t=evening1-hi1.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i420.photobucket.com/albums/pp286/ladypink_2009/evening1-hi1.jpg" border="0" alt="evening"></a> This movie is heart touching and beautiful to watch, I like the cast in here, Great actors like Meryls Streep, Vanessa Redgrave, Claire Danes, Patrick Wilson, Toni Collette, so much more,, and they put here a great story, fans of love and romantic drama, this is one movie to see. 4 stars
    Daisy M Super Reviewer

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