Now he plays a former famous novelist in the very literary movie Starting Out in The Evening. And he is so quiet and restrained and so powerfully internalized, I'm guessing Oscar nomination too, if somebody takes the trouble to watch the small, fine film. It is delightful to see Lili Taylor again, playing his intense New York daughter. She holds her own as usual, with great intensity. As for Lauren Ambrose (formerly of 6 Feet Under), she tries very hard and almost succeeds in portraying an ambitious graduate student who insinuates herself into the life of the famous novelist. She gives a brave performance, but she fidgets, and makes faces and shows every tic in the book, which may not be the best way to go when you are faced with a Totemic force like Frank Langella, who is a study in the emotional power of stillness.
Kudos to my pals, cinematographer Harlan Bosmajian and Manuel Billeter, the camera operator (and dp of my own little short -- gotta do the plug), for making this movie, shot in HD video, look like a film, very beautiful.