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"EVENING"
(2007) (Vanessa Redgrave, Claire Danes) (PG-13)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Heavy Mild Moderate Mild None
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Mild Minor None None Heavy
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Heavy Moderate Heavy Moderate Moderate


QUICK TAKE:
Drama: A terminally ill woman remembers her past as she wonders if she let the perfect man get away fifty years ago.
PLOT:
Ann Lord (VANESSA REDGRAVE) is a terminally ill woman near the end of her life. Cared for by the night nurse (EILEEN ATKINS), she goes in and out of making sense, talking about Harris being her first mistake, and that the two of them killed someone named Buddy. All of which comes as news to her adult daughters, Nina Mars (TONI COLLETTE) and Constance Haverford (NATASHA RICHARDSON).

While the latter has led a mostly happy life with a husband and kids, Nina has drifted from one job and boyfriend to the next, meaning she isn't sure she can commit to her latest beau, Luc (EBON MOSS-BACHRACH). Thus, and thinking that her mom is experiencing the same sort of regret about life choices just like her, Nina tries to figure out if the people her mom mentioned are real, and if they are, how and when they fit into her life.

Fifty years ago, Ann Grant (CLAIRE DANES) is a young woman arriving at the coastal New England home of her best friend, Lila Wittenborn (MAMIE GUMMER). The latter is about to get married, with Ann to serve as her bridesmaid. That's all while Lila's high society mother Mrs. Wittenborn (GLENN CLOSE), focuses on the seating assignments for the reception, and Lila's boozing playboy type brother Buddy (HUGH DANCY) thinks she's marrying the wrong man. That's because he, Lila and eventually Ann, are all smitten with Harris Arden (PATRICK WILSON), the son of the family's former housekeeper who's grown up into a dashing doctor.

As the family dynamics play out over the next few days leading up to the wedding, Ann finds herself worried about Buddy but drawn to Harris, events that lead to those memories on her death bed so many years later, wondering about the decisions she made so long ago.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
Those into "weepy" dramatic "chick flicks" just might, which also holds true for anyone who's a fan or the original book, or anyone in the cast.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG-13
For some thematic elements, sexual material, a brief accident scene and language.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • CLAIRE DANES plays a young woman in the 1950s who arrives for her friend's wedding and gets caught up in the family dynamics. She's increasingly concerned about Buddy and his behavior, but finds herself drawn to Harris with whom she eventually sleeps. She briefly smokes.
  • VANESSA REDGRAVE plays Ann in the present day, a terminally ill, older woman who goes in and out of making sense, all while recalling bits and pieces of her past. She briefly uses strong profanity.
  • TONI COLLETTE plays Ann's daughter in the present day who drifts through life from one job and boyfriend to the next, but ends up pregnant by Luc. She's fixated on figuring out her mom's past, thus putting some additional strain on her sisterly relationship with Constance.
  • PATRICK WILSON plays the dashing doctor who grew up as the son of the Wittenborn's housekeeper, thus drawing crushes from both Lila and Buddy. The same holds true for Ann who he eventually beds. He briefly smokes and drinks some.
  • HUGH DANCY plays Lila's silver spoon brother who doesn't want her to marry her fiancÚ. A closet bisexual or gay man, he has a drinking problem that worsens as the film progresses.
  • NATASHA RICHARDSON plays Nina's sister who somewhat looks down on her choices in life, and doesn't want her fixation on their mom's past to upset their mother.
  • MAMIE GUMMER plays Ann's best friend in the 1950s who's getting married, but isn't happy about it as she still has a crush on Harris. She briefly smokes.
  • EILEEN ATKINS plays the night nurse who cares for Ann in her last days.
  • MERYL STREEP plays Lila at an older age who comes to visit Ann on her deathbed.
  • GLENN CLOSE plays Lila's high society mother who's most concerned about the seating arrangements for the wedding until more serious issues develop. She smokes a few times.
  • EBON MOSS-BACHRACH plays Nina's boyfriend (by whom she turns out to be pregnant) who wants a deeper commitment from her, and is frustrated when she can't provide that.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    Here's a quick look at the content found in this drama that's been rated PG-13. Profanity consists of at least 1 "f" word, while other expletives and colorful phrases are also uttered. Sexually related dialogue is present, as is the beginning of a sexual encounter (that concludes off camera).

    A woman announces she's two months pregnant by her boyfriend, while a man's bare butt and a woman in her underwear are seen from a distance at night as they leap off a cliff into the water below. Other kissing and cleavage are present, while it's heavily implied that a man is either gay or bisexual.

    Various bad attitudes are present, as is tense family material (including that of family deaths). Thematic elements include that, as well as a character being an alcoholic, while other characters drink and/or smoke. A person is accidentally struck by a vehicle at night (with bloody wounds and an eventual, unseen death), while a scene depicts a presumed drowning that turns out not to be the case.

    If you're still concerned about the film and its appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home who may be interested in seeing it, we suggest that you take a closer look at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Finding Buddy drinking, Young Ann asks if it's a bit early, and he jokes that in Newport, it starts at noon.
  • Nina comments on something being after a bottle of champagne.
  • Miscellaneous people drink at a gathering, including Harris, while Buddy appears intoxicated. Reminded that Harris was her first kiss at the age of 15, Lila comments on having gotten into her father's scotch, makes a joke about being drunk and abandoned, and then says she faked passing out so that Harris would pay attention to her. Buddy pours more wine or champagne for himself, but Young Ann takes that away from him. Moments later, he's even more plastered than before, makes a drunken speech, and then passes out on the ground after Young Ann and Harris escort him outside (with Harris joking that Buddy started at the age of 12).
  • Buddy and Young Ann find an old wine bottle washed up on the shore, with Buddy opening it, saying there's wine inside, and Young Ann tells him not to try it (he doesn't and instead pours it out).
  • People have champagne at a wedding reception.
  • Before singing at Lila's wedding, Young Ann jokes that she told the bride that she only sings for drunks and tourists, prompting someone at the reception to yell out, "And we're not tourists."
  • Buddy walks out holding a bottle, intoxicated.
  • Miscellaneous people drink after Lila's wedding.
  • Intoxicated and drinking from a bottle he carries, Buddy leaps from a cliff down into the water far below, but then doesn't re-surface. Everyone panics and two men jump in, searching for him. He then appears back up on the cliff, joking about what's occurring, with Young Ann then slapping him for the way he's acting.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • Constance's young child complains about something from the car (that sounded like "farting").
  • A man's face is bloody after a car accidentally hits him.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • On her deathbed, Old Ann says that Harris was her first mistake, and that the two of them killed Buddy (we later learn that they were not directly involved in the accident).
  • About wedding reception seating plans, Mrs. Wittenborn jokes that half the guests have had disastrous affairs.
  • There's some tension between Nina and Constance as sisters, and how they view their own and each other's lives.
  • As an intoxicated person walks through the woods at night, he ends up crossing a road where an oncoming car accidentally hits him (the driver apparently leaves as we later see the man's body lying crumpled on the road).
  • We see a flashback of Young Ann not being happy as a harried and married mother of two who's trying to cook when her husband hands her their youngest, saying he has to work.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Intoxicated and drinking from a bottle he carries, Buddy leaps from a cliff down into the water far below, but then doesn't re-surface. Everyone panics and two men jump in, searching for him. He then appears back up on the cliff, joking about what's occurring, with Young Ann then slapping him for the way he's acting.
  • As an intoxicated person walks through the woods at night, he ends up crossing a road where an oncoming car accidentally hits him (the driver apparently leaves as we later see the man's body lying crumpled on the road). Others later find this man, and his face is bloody, but he's still alive. A later scene, however, suggests that he died sometime after they took him away to try to get help.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • None.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "Oh, f*ck off," "Big ass house," "It's time to shut up and dance," "Whatever the hell that means," "Screwing up," "The bastard," "Jeez," "You're pathetic" and "Scares the hell out of me."
  • At night and from a distance, we see a fully nude man jump off a cliff down into the water quite a ways below (we briefly see his bare butt). A woman in a bustier and large panties then does the same thing.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • Constance's young kids touch Old Ann's hand (as she sleeps). Since the shot is a close-up, when Old Ann's hand flinches, that might startle some viewers.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • None.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 1 "f" word, 2 damns, 2 hells, 1 ass, 3 uses of "Oh my God," 2 of "G-damn" and 1 use each of "God," "Jesus," "My God" and "Oh my Lord."
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • About wedding reception seating plans, Mrs. Wittenborn jokes that half the guests have had disastrous affairs.
  • Nina says that the name of her mom's friend sounds like a stripper.
  • We see one member of the bridal party in a bustier that shows a little cleavage.
  • Young Ann and Harris passionately kiss while clothed and standing.
  • Lila admits to Young Ann that the night before her (Lila's) wedding, she offered to sneak out and do anything and everything that Harris wanted (he declined). She then adds that after making that offer, she realized she couldn't do everything she offered, meaning anatomically.
  • Nina briefly shows some cleavage while leaning over.
  • Nina announces that she's two-months pregnant by Luc.
  • About how she thinks Constance leads her life, Nina sarcastically says no more sex, no matter how tired, because the children might hear. Constance then says that Nina is a drifter (in her selection of jobs and boyfriends) and that nothing gets in her. Nina then says that something did, admitting to her sister that she's pregnant.
  • Young Ann and Harris passionately kiss while standing and clothed.
  • While intoxicated, Buddy tries to kiss Young Ann. When she turns her head away, he turns to Harris and plants a kiss on his lips. Buddy and Young Ann later talk about that (with the undercurrent being that he's gay or bisexual).
  • A member of Lila's bridal party jokingly asks about if they need to tell her about the birds and the bees (for Lila's wedding night).
  • At night and from a distance, we see a fully nude man jump off a cliff down into the water quite a ways below (we briefly see his bare butt). A woman in a bustier and large panties then does the same thing.
  • Retreating to his childhood hideout (a building), Harris and Young Ann passionately kiss while standing. She then removes his outer shirt, and he then removes his tank-top, with them continuing to kiss. Sex is implied as we then see them under some covers lying side by side (no nudity).
  • We briefly see a little miscellaneous cleavage.
  • Young Ann shows a little cleavage.
  • SMOKING
  • Buddy, Mrs. Wittenborn, and Harris each smoke at least 2 times, while Lila, Old Ann, Young Ann and several miscellaneous characters smoke at least once.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • Constance thinks that Nina is torturing their mom with all of her questions about Old Ann's past, and the two must deal with their mother being on her deathbed.
  • There's some tension between Nina and Constance as sisters, and how they view their own and each other's lives.
  • We hear that Old Ann had several husbands.
  • We see a mother hysterically crying, presumably from getting news that her son was killed (others there look shocked as well).
  • Older Lila says that her husband has been dead now for seven years.
  • We see a flashback of Young Ann not being happy as a harried and married mother of two who's trying to cook when her husband hands her their youngest while he has to work. Young Ann then sits down and sings to her two daughters, calming down all of them.
  • Nina and Constance get the implied news that their mother has died, and we then see a long view of Old Ann lying presumably dead in her bed.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • The notion of regret, and how to view past mistakes.
  • Terminal illnesses, death, and dying.
  • Alcoholism.
  • About her life, Old Ann sees only waste and failure.
  • The fact that Nina apparently drifts through her life from one job and boyfriend to the next.
  • Old Ann saying she thought there'd be so many chances (mainly about Harris, but also about life in general).
  • The comment that we're mysterious creatures, and that in the end, so much of what occurs in life doesn't matter.
  • VIOLENCE
  • Young Ann slaps Buddy while mad at him.
  • As an intoxicated person walks through the woods at night, he ends up crossing a road where an oncoming car accidentally hits him (the driver apparently leaves as we later see the man's body lying crumpled on the road). Others later find this man, and his face is bloody, but he's still alive. A later scene, however, suggests that he died sometime after they took him away to try to get help.



  • Reviewed June 18, 2007 / Posted June 29, 2007

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