Movie Reviews: Before Sunrise, Before Sunset

A romantic trilogy that astonishingly gets better and better

Watching all three films straight in the Before trilogy was an amazing experience. Here’s what I thought on the first two:

Before Sunrise (#436)

Before Sunrise is very intimate, very romantic story of two strangers meeting at the most improbable place and time. I couldn’t imagine how such a simple thing could sustain my interest for almost 90-minutes, but with a screenplay that includes amazing dialogue between two outstanding actors they won me over. I liked how natural everything felt from Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy’s conversations to their actions in each setting they’re in. Some of the incidental happenings might have felt orchestrated but you have the perception that such occurrences were there to forward the story. There is no fake tension, just small arguments that’s more likely to occur and that sense of realism makes the otherwise unreal meet-up between the two leads more believable. It’s well-shot and smoothly directed and it complements the story a whole lot that it felt very intimate and personal while I was watching it.

GRADE: B+

Before Sunset (#437)

I can imagine Before Sunset as a dream come true for people who saw the original back in 1995. This is a beautiful film from start to finish, and is a fine example of intelligent storytelling propelled by the two leads Hawke and Delpy who also co-wrote the screenplay with director Richard Linklater. This time, you discover what has occurred in between the two films directly from the dialogue, flashbacks notwithstanding. There are nostalgic references everywhere and it’s hard not to notice even if you haven’t seen the original for a while. It’s brilliant filmmaking and once again I love it’s unforced and natural progression. There were instances where I was thinking ahead wondering where their conversations will lead to, but by the end I realized all I had to do was simply follow what was going on. True enough, I enjoyed the experience and the ending was as sweet and happy as I wanted it to be.

GRADE: A-

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