The Power of Love

Before Midnight (2013)
A Review By Ben Hunter
5 Out Of 5 Stars
May 24, 2013


The essence of the trio of films is definitely captured here with the trio of talent that made it. This film makes you appreciate fighting for sharing your life with the one you love.  Something we all can appreciate. 

It’s been almost 20 years, both cinematically and realistically, since that fateful day when Jesse approached Celine on the train, bound for Vienna.  They met, romantically and intrinsically intertwined in a figurative dance in that initial human emotion when you meet someone you’re interested in.  Fate separated and reunited them together again and they followed what felt like inevitable to the both of them, even with current relationships (we all knew what was coming when we last left the two).  So alas, it’s been 9 years together, beautiful twin girls are among us, Jesse’s in a custody battle over his son, but Celine & Jesse are together!  They’re on vacation in Greece for the summer with their new family and we see now how that inevitable has guided their lives thus far. 

This is where everything begins in this new chapter of the story, and boy do we get intrigued with its unveiling!  Writer/director Richard Linklater along with fellow writers/lead actors Ethan Hawke & Julie Delpy have REALLY put their all into the writing and making of this story.  The delicate idiosyncrasies they perfectly captured of the couple and how they would act as a couple that’s been together for almost a decade now and have known each other for an additional decade prior.  This is definitely a film that will grow on me and those of my generation who appreciate a well-told story.  For the capturing of the true dynamic of a relationship well off in the midst of things and not in the innocent beginning stage when everything is absolutely perfect, is something one can appreciate to experience and be aware of from time to time.  My parents would probably be much more appreciative of this film than I as they could relate much more with the scenarios of emotion and the happenings that take place between a couple that’s been together for a long period of time.  This is why I love my parents so much who’ve endured not 9, or almost 20, but over 30 years together.  This is why a movie like this is much appreciated by anyone who can realize the beauty of enduring and fighting for a relationship you love and want to work.  A movie I will love to watch from time to time and grow with! 

Julie ... Julie Julie Julie … oh how I love thee!  You are just the complete package one could ask for in a woman.  You are beautiful, both in the stereotypical way that we as humans rate one another, as well as with your charisma, your cultural upbringing with the dynamics of your loving family, your intelligence, and your talent!  Not to mention your to die for French accent!  Even if you do get things wrong (your last film with Chris Rock, 2012’s 2 Days In New York), you still keep us interested in all that you do because of who you are!  It really shows in this film just how amazing you are.  Your chemistry with Ethan Hawke is SPOT ON!  This is a dialogue driven film, meaning it’s basically like theater.  It’s a movie with very little scene changes, and the heart & soul or the “meat” of the film are just actors in a room talking.  Yet we are entranced with each scene, each conversation, and with each shift in tone, mood, and dialect.  With each moment we want more (in the good way), just like in our first encounter with the two of you (1995’s Before Sunrise, the better of the trio in my opinion).  Just like in Sunrise, I get a sense of how well the chemistry was captured then in this film now.  There are some scenes that give the feeling of the first one and make us the audience feel like we’re starting to experience the dance all over again!  A perfect place to end the story, or to pick up again in a decade to see where things lay … or in 50 years if they can still put up with each other by then!

If you’re an adult, go see this film, end of conversation. 

Before Midnight
Drama, 108 Minutes, R
Written by: Richard Linklater, Ethan Hawke, & Julie Delpy
Directed by: Richard Linklater
Cast: Ethan Hawke & Julie Delpy

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