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Before Sunset (2004)

  Directed by: Richard Linklater
Written by: Julie Delpy, Ethan Hawke, Kim Krizan, Richard Linklater
Starring: Julie Delpy, Ethan Hawke
Links: Before Sunset on the IMDb, Buy the Soundtrack
Genre: Romance

This movie gets: 8.00 (1 rating) Ranking: not yet ranked (awaiting 2 ratings)

Before Sunset (2004) is also mentioned in pearly's review of Before Sunrise (1995) and em_fiction's review of Coffee and Cigarettes (2003).

"Like a cosy old blanket..." - a review by pearly

I don't think it's a spoiler to tell you that in Before Sunset, our heroes Jesse (Ethan Hawke) and Celine (Julie Delpy), who we initially met in Before Sunrise (1995), meet up again in Europe and have a big ol' chat about the events of the last ten or so years.

Anything much beyond that starts to delve into spoiler territory, unfortunately. What's not unfortunate, though, is that you don't really need to say all that much more about a film like this. It is what it is - an hour and twenty minute long conversation, in much the same way as the first one was.

There are fun moments, poignant moments, and moments where the air between the two is so thick that you could slice it with a knife. There are the feelings deep down in your gut about the direction you want things to go in, and there's what's actually happening on screen. These two things are not always the same.

These characters are obviously well loved by their portrayers. Hawke and Delpy play their parts with such delicacy and believability that you're really transported into their world, if just for a little while. They both must have such a stake in these characters now that they've both been involved in the script-writing for this film, along with director Richard Linklater. You can see that the way in which the whole thing plays out was the subject of countless hours of deliberation between these three.

Okay, maybe just a couple of slight spoilers from here on.

My only criticism, and it's not even necessarily a negative thing, it just depends on how you look at it, is please, please, stop teasing us! Everything is done just so, and some people will love the openness and the ability to "choose your own ending", as it were. But, having just watched the first incarnation two days prior to this one (for the first time), I was hoping for some kind of solid resolution. Or, not even necessarily a resolution, but something. Something firmer than what was revealed. As I say, this point is one that's likely to be viewed differently by different people, and I did appreciate the way that the tale went, but I was just hoping for more, even just a little bit more. I wonder whether, in another ten years, I'll be sitting down to watch a third installment. Now, what would they call it?

pearly gives this movie 8 out of 10.
Review created on Tue 24 Aug 2004

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