Friday, March 09, 2007

postheadericon Before Sunset (2004)

Before Sunset

Directed by
Richard Linklater

Written by
Linklater, Kim Krizan, Julie Delpy, and Ethan Hawke

Delpy and Hawke.

Imagine this: You're a young, single man or woman and you're travelling through Europe as many young people are want to do. You meet this really wonderful man (or woman) on the train and have a wonderful time conversing together. When you realize you have a common destination (Vienna) you decide to spend the day together taking in the sights of the city. You find, as you walk and talk, you have even more in common than you dared hope, and at the end of the day you do what only seems natural - you make wild, passionate love in a park to this person you have enjoyed the day with. Obviously, you want to meet her or him again, but in typical youthful impulsiveness you decide not to exhcange addresses or phone #'s, but instead, you both plan to meet 6 months from now on the same train platform in Vienna that you disembarked from.

However, 6 months later, you find you are unable to make it to Vienna because of certain commitments. You torment yourself for a while, for not being able to make it, you curse the fact that you never exchanged addresses, but such is life. Nine years go by, you have never forgotten this person, but life goes on.

Have you ever had that happen to you? Have you ever clicked so wonderfully with someone for an hour or two and wondered what life might have been like if you had more time with them?

Anyway, I digress...the story I was having you imagine is the story
of Jesse and Celine (Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy) from "Before Sunset". In the years that go by Ethan Hawke becomes a writer and recreates that day in Vienna with Celine as a theme for his first bestselling book. A chance meeting in Paris (where Jesse has gone to attend a book signing) brings the couple together after 9 years. Hawke has only an hour before his flight takes off and they spend the hour reminisicing, first in a beautiful Parisian cafe and then on a stroll in a Paris park and suburbs...they even manage to squeeze in a quick boat ride.

This movie takes place all in a span of 60 mins and I found its main characters are not Jesse and Celine, but the conversations that take place between them. If you ever want to watch a movie with impressive dialogue, this is the one for you! Their conversations provide such keen insights and understanding to the human nature: our wants, our needs and what we are able to sacrifice to achieve them. Their chats touch on human relationships,religion, the environment, love lost and found and the tenacity of bonds that develop between people that are truly connected to each other. However, you also realize how often we choose to live our lives by default, content to let things happen to us rather than to go and make it happen for us. You learn that no man is an island and sometimes, we will be with someone we don't love only because we can't bear to be alone. But, as wonderful as the conversations are, what is equally wonderful is what is not said but merely suggested by the very talented actors' expressions and body language. If you have 1hr and 20mins to spare before your day ends, go rent the movie, you will enjoy the experience!

Technically, "Before Sunset" would be considered a sequel to "Before Sunrise" (which is a movie about the couple's day spent in Vienna), but it is also a stand alone movie.


ML said...

That sounds like my kind of movie. Even though it's torture (just the anticipation), I still get a kick out of a story where the characters meet up for a brief but intense time and then don't for a long time, then meet again. Sorry about my bad grammar and run on sentence, Lotus (blushing!)

Thanks for the review, Lotus. I'll definately check this movie out!

Sanjay said...

Lotus, this is an excellent review. Back when it came out, it was one of those that I wanted to watch. But like many others, it sort of fell by the wayside.

Then I read your review and the desire to watch it had been rekindled again thanks to you. :)

Hawke and Delpy are both great actors. Hawke was great in training day with Denzel and Delpy in white.

To answer the question in your post..
Have you ever had that happen to you? Have you ever clicked so wonderfully with someone for an hour or two and wondered what life might have been like if you had more time with them?

The answer is yes, it has happened to me. Different time, different place who knows what might have become of me and that person?

I was wondering why the director sounded familiar. Richard Linklater has done a bunch of good movies. link .
He is familiar cuz I currently have scanner darkly, which is one of his recent efforts.

Once again a great movie review, you got to the soul of the movie in a few lines.

Prashant said...

You learn that no man is an island and sometimes, we will be with someone we don't love only because we can't bear to be alone.

Great lines..
Will watch teh movie surely.....
A really nice -nice post...

Radha said...

You're a hopeless romantic !! :)

diyadear said...

lotus the review is simply remarkable.. i feel the need to watch this movie after reading ur post.. esp liked ur lines abt how we live default lives not trying to make it.. very true..
N as for the question abt spending few hrs with any person yes i have had such an experience.. he was a man of 64 n the train journey we shared remains still a memorable one..

trupti said...

Lovely're tempting me to go tell my hubby to rent it for me. Has this happened to me? no, not along the same lines....but somewhat. Will tell you about it sometime.


Sai said...

Lovely review. I will definitely rent it.

Lotus Reads said...

Hey, ml!

I didn't notice any bad grammar or run on sentence...loved the comment, thanks! :)

Hi, Sanjay!

Thank you! *blush*. Yeah, even I wonder why I hadn't seen this movie earlier. I remember Motorama praising the movie and I thought I should give it a "dekho" and I'm so glad I did!

Thanks for the Richard Linklater link, I am definitely going to have to see more of his movies, I just loved the dialogues!

Thank you, Prashant!

I hope you enjoy the movie! Maybe I should warn all the guys that it is quite a romantic movie! ;)

Hi, Radha!

That I am! :) Thanks for stopping by here!

Wow, Diyadear!

Older people have such wisdom through having lived so much of life...I am sure your meeting with this man was very memorable. Treasure those memories and thanks very much for sharing!

Hi, Trupti!

Yes, rent it, there is so much in this movie that merits discussion and more discussion. I would love to hear about your chance meeting...maybe over a lunch at Brar's? You need to let me know when you will be here next, ok?

hi, Sai!

Yes, let me know what you thought of the movie. LIke I said, it provides so much fodder for discussion.

tanabata said...

It's so true about the dialogue. You're making me want to see both films again! :)

numb.lock. said...

nice movie. i loved it. but i like the first one better somehow...maybe it's because this one ends very ambiguously...and i like movies that have 'endings'. it's what makes them movies!!
i think i've seen before sunrise some 15 times... :)

Rauf said...

You look like Julie Delpy i said.
Who ?
Julie Delpy
Whos is that ?
Well !

I loved every minute of it. It is the title which attracted me. I was not disappointed. Vienna. they meet a couple of actors on the bridge ??, they invite them to the play. funny dialogue
Things I remember is while in the train, Hawk says he doesn't speak any other language. Typical american.

We meet here in 6 months ?
It will be FRIZZING Delpy says

This has happened to me but we never met after that. i travel a lot. Happened In Nepal, some 30 years ago. She was a Belgian girl, met in the bus on my way to Khatmandu. On the way she had no change and i paid for her tea. For the rest of the journey she sat next to me, kept talking. When we reached Khatmandu, i said goodbye and left. I walked away for some distance and turned back and found her in some trouble with porters. i physically pushed the porters away grabbed her rucsac and told her to walk with me. We took a cycle rickshaw and got her a room.
then we had dinner. She wanted to try the local drink made out of rice, i advised her against it. but she went ahead. I dropped her at her lodge and went looking for a cheaper room for myself. We met next morning and went around khatmandu on hired cycles. I had trekking plans, so said goodbye to her at the end of the day. Never met her after that. No email IDs those days.

Lotus Reads said...

@Nat ~ I hope you do!!!

@numb.lock ~ 15 times??? My goodness, you really make me want to see "Before Sunrise", I will have to rent it!

@Rauf ~ lol, I just LOVE anecdotes that result from your travels all over India and the world...keep 'em coming!

Yuva said...

such is LIFE.. and copy of story/plot from Serendipity

I must say traveling thru europe, these may not be those unrealistic movie scenes. this is humanly possible... and fact does play its role. -- Life is not always about choices but it also about priorities.

with memories.. /Yuva

Lotus Reads said...

Yuva, you make travel through Europe sound so exciting, I feel like packing up and heading for Paris. If only it were that simple! :)

Will have to watch "Serendipity" thank you very much for the recommenddation.