Before Sunrise (1995)

Before Sunrise (1995) — This is the first romance film that is actually ROMANTIC that I’ve seen in… well, actually at the moment I can’t think of any other examples. As a genre it’s so full of trite sentimentality that it is so refreshing to actually seen one that is good. Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy play two young people, American and French respectively, who meet on a train in Austria and decide to spend the afternoon/evening/night together in Vienna before his plane back to the States in the morning. They roam around Vienna and talk. That’s it. This movie is entirely driven by conversation as opposed to action. And that’s why it works. Cowriter/director Richard Linklater has some experience with this dialogue-heavy single-day type of film with Slacker, Dazed and Confused, and Waking Life (the latter of which features Before Sunrise‘s leads Jesse and Celine in a dream sequence [one of many]). The film centers of the impracticalities of love and the potential it has to be fleeting. Jesse has a plane to catch in the morning so is this the only day they’ll ever spend together? They’re both recenly out of relationships (VERY recently in Jesse’s case) so is it possible they’re both just needing a rebound? The film doesn’t answer too many questions and it’s better for it. This is a movie about two young people and they’re thoughts and dreams and the connection they share in one night, whatever it means. This is one of those movies that makes me think about the possibilities of life.

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