Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBBB. USA, 2004. Warner Independent Pictures, Castle Rock Entertainment, Detour Filmproduction. Story by Richard Linklater, Kim Krizan, Screenplay by Richard Linklater, Julie Delpy, Ethan Hawke, based on characters created by Richard Linklater, Kim Krizan. Cinematography by Lee Daniel. Produced by Anne Walker-McBay. Production Design by Baptiste Glaymann. Costume Design by Thierry Delettre. Film Editing by Sandra Adair. Academy Awards 2004. Independent Spirit Awards 2004.
Nine years after they met briefly in Vienna and had a glorious evening together, a now successful writer (Ethan Hawke) and a beautiful French social worker (Julie Delpy) bump into each other in Paris. He only has a few hours before he has to catch a plane back to New York, so they have coffee, go for a walk, and catch up on old times, giving each other an update of who they are and how it compares with who they used to be. They’re just as attracted to each other as they were the first time around, but admitting it is difficult to deal with because it brings up implications of time wasted and complicates their present situation. This lyrical ode to lifelong romance, brilliantly scripted by director Richard Linklater, Kim Krizan and the two stars, is about as good as any movie can be when packed into 80 very short minutes; it is romantic, heartbreaking, funny and exciting, capped off by a beautiful song (written and performed by Delpy) and a most deliciously promising ending. It’s about as good a time as you can have in front of a movie screen watching two people have a conversation for an hour and a half.