Ann Grant (Vanessa Redgrave) is reminiscing over her youth whilst on her death bed. In particular, she recounts the painful love triangle in which she found herself with two young men. An old friend arrives to say goodbye and listens to Ann's ramblings about the past.

2.5
So much was crammed into the screenplay from the novel that they left little room for believable set ups and transitions.

Adapted by Pulitzer Prize winning author Michael Cunningham from the best selling novel by Susan Minot, Evening features a stellar cast. And the cast is the biggest drawcard in the film.

Evening is the story of Anne who, on her deathbed, reflects over the great-lost love of her life and a terrible tragedy that occurred one summer in Rhode Island over 50 years ago.

Clare Danes gives a great performance as the hopeful, bright young Anne. She is such a wonderful actress and it was her presence in the past scenes that I enjoyed the most. But scenes in the bedroom with the older Anne and her daughters felt strangely awkward, I didn't really believe that they were family, which is ironic given that Natasha Richardson and Vanessa Redgrave are real life mother and daughter. I felt somewhat cheated every time I was jolted back to the bedroom scenes, except when Meryl Streep who played Lila Winterborn, entered the film. Her few scenes were masterful and it’s worth mentioning how marvellous her real life daughter Mamie Gummer was as the younger Lila.

Harris, played by Patrick Wilson, is the great love of Anne's life and he suited the part well. He looked like a Ralph Lauren model straight out of the pages of Vogue. However, I felt no passion at all between him and Clare Danes because the screenplay was just too busy. Writer, Cunningham and director Lajos Koltai tried to cram so much into the screenplay from the novel that they left little room for believable set ups and transitions. It compromised the film – so instead of believing that their love was astonishing, it just felt all too rushed and flat.

Anne Roth's costumes were beautiful. She really captured that whole illusive Cape Cod feeling of the 50’s. And the cinematography from Gyula Pados was glorious – particularly in the Newport scenes. The blues and whites were in stark contrast to the feeling of death and loss in the present. However, the beautiful costumes and cinematography combined with some solid performances could not save this film. I was reminded of the Nick Cassavetes film The Notebook. It had a very similar theme to Evening, that of love lost. However, The Notebook managed to extract so much more out of the love story.

Evening will have an audience and there were parts of the film such as the performances that I enjoyed very much. However, it could have been so much more and for that I’m only giving it 2 ½ stars.