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Starting Out in the Evening

Starting Out in the Evening

5.0 1
Director: Andrew Wagner

Cast: Frank Langella, Lauren Ambrose, Lili Taylor

Frank Langella (Dracula, Good Night, and Good Luck.) stars in Andrew Wagner's independent drama Starting Out in the Evening, an adaptation of the acclaimed 1999 best-seller by Brian Morton. Langella plays Leonard Schiller, a once-celebrated author whose first four novels inspired Heather Wolfe (


Frank Langella (Dracula, Good Night, and Good Luck.) stars in Andrew Wagner's independent drama Starting Out in the Evening, an adaptation of the acclaimed 1999 best-seller by Brian Morton. Langella plays Leonard Schiller, a once-celebrated author whose first four novels inspired Heather Wolfe (Lauren Ambrose) to pursue a career as a writer. These days, Leonard is still working toward completion of the novel that has occupied his life for nearly a decade. On the surface, Leonard has removed himself completely from the deep-seated need for success that characterized his life at an earlier point in time; but on a more buried level, he still longs for his fiction to be rediscovered and re-acclaimed. Now an eager graduate student in the throes of her thesis, Heather is writing her dissertation on Schiller, and promptly convinces him that she can use the thesis to regenerate popularity and discovery of his work. Heather also projects personal interest in Leonard, however, which cuts straight through to the core of his loneliness and brings him in touch with his need for a meaningful relationship even as it leaves him feeling shaken and increasingly uncertain. Meanwhile, Leonard finds that his relationship with his daughter, Ariel (Lili Taylor), is challenged, both by Heather's presence and by Ariel's decision to begin dating her former boyfriend Casey (Adrian Lester) once again -- a fact that Leonard finds most upsetting thanks to his disapproval of Casey. Suddenly, Leonard feels his entire world turned upside down, from his familial relationships to the security of his writing to his own physical vitality -- but he is also taking risks and plunging headfirst into the core of life for the first time, thus living out the principles long celebrated and upheld in his fiction and giving himself the capacity to grow.

Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Lions Gate
Region Code:
[Wide Screen]
[Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Sales rank:

Special Features

Closed Caption; Director's commentary; TV spot and theatrical trailer

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Frank Langella Leonard Schiller
Lauren Ambrose Heather Wolfe
Lili Taylor Ariel Schiller
Adrian Lester Casey Davis
Karl Bury Actor
Anitha Gandhi Actor
Sean T. Krishnan Actor
Jessica Hecht Actor

Technical Credits
Andrew Wagner Director,Producer,Screenwriter
Jake Abraham Producer
Gena Bleier Editor
Harlan Bosmajian Cinematographer
Claudia Brown Costumes/Costume Designer
Linda Cohen Musical Direction/Supervision
Shahrzad "Sheri" Davani Asst. Director
Adam Gorgoni Score Composer
Douglas Harmon Executive Producer
Nancy Israel Producer
Jan Mclaughlin Sound/Sound Designer
Greg Moyer Executive Producer
Allen Myerson Executive Producer
Fred Parnes Producer,Screenwriter
John Sloss Executive Producer
Carol Strober Production Designer
Mandy Tagger Co-producer
Cindy Tolan Casting
Gary Winick Producer
Dara Wishingrad Art Director

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Starting Out in the Evening
1. Chapter 1 [6:00]
2. Chapter 2 [3:57]
3. Chapter 3 [3:54]
4. Chapter 4 [4:27]
5. Chapter 5 [7:53]
6. Chapter 6 [5:56]
7. Chapter 7 [8:35]
8. Chapter 8 [5:05]
9. Chapter 9 [6:40]
10. Chapter 10 [4:36]
11. Chapter 11 [5:18]
12. Chapter 12 [:57]
13. Chapter 13 [4:47]
14. Chapter 14 [5:37]
15. Chapter 15 [5:43]
16. Chapter 16 [4:59]
17. Chapter 17 [4:59]
18. Chapter 18 [5:53]
19. Chapter 19 [4:38]
20. Chapter 20 [5:23]


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Starting Out in the Evening 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
STARTING OUT IN THE EVENING is a quietly moving work of art, a film adapted from Brian Morton's novel by screenwriters Fred Parnes and Andrew Wagner who also directs that dares to take us to the wall with decisions we make about how we conduct our lives and negotiate the changes that can either be stumbling blocks or stimuli for creative awareness, It has much to say about the creative process of writing, a theme upon which it first appears to be based, but it more importantly urges us to examine how we live - how we make use of this moment of time in which we inhabit a body in the universe. Leonard Schiller (in an extraordinarily understated performance by Frank Langella) is an aging author, a man whose first two novels seem to set the literary world on fire, but whose next two novels languished on the shelves and slipped into the same plane of obscurity Schiller finds his life since the death of hi wife. He has a daughter Ariel (Lili Taylor in another richly hued performance) who is nearing age forty and is unable to bond permanently with a man because of her obsession with having children before her biological clock ticks past fertility. Into their lives comes Heather Wolfe (Lauren Ambrose), a bright young graduate student who has elected to write her master's thesis on the works of Leonard Schiller. Schiller is absorbed in writing what may be his last novel and can't be bothered with Heather's plea for a series of interviews. But curiosity intervenes and soon heather and Leonard are involved in the process of interviewing, a process which gradually builds into overtones of heather' physical as well as intellectual attraction to Leonard. Meanwhile Ariel observes the process that seems to be infusing life into her father and encourages her to exit her current relationship with Victor (Michael Cumpsty) and re-connect with the true love of her life Casey (Adrian Lester), a man she loves but who refuses to give her the children she so desperately wants. The manner in these characters interact and learn from each other the importance of sharing Life instead of obsessing with selfish goals brings the drama to a rather open-ended close, another factor that makes this story significantly better than most themes of May-December romance and unilateral coping with self centered directions. The pleasures of this film are many, but among the finest is the quality of acting by Langella, Taylor, Ambrose, and Lester. In many ways the story is a parallax of views of life as art that subtly intertwine like a fine string quartet. Why this film was ignored by the Oscars only suggests that movies for the mind take second place to movies for the merriment of entertainment. For people who enjoy the challenge of a meaty story, this film is a must. Grady Harp