Before Sunset (2004)


Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBBB

USA, 2004, , Detour Filmproduction.  Story by Richard Linklater, , Screenplay by Richard Linklater, , , based on characters created by Richard Linklater, Kim Krizan.  Cinematography by .  Produced by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .  

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 () bump into each other in Paris.

He only has a few hours before his 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.

The Criterion Collection:  #858

Academy Award Nomination:  Best Adapted Screenplay

Berlin Film Festival:  In Competition


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