95 – Before Sunset

Welcome to The Best Movies I’ve Never Seen! This is the part of the blog where I work my way through 100 films I’ve never seen that are generally considered to be great. You’re invited to watch along with me if you can find a copy or find it streaming. So grab some popcorn and let’s get started!

Before Sunset

2004

Directed by Richard Linklater

Quick synopsis… An American man and a French woman who shared a brief but passionate night are reunited for a day in this sequel to Before Sunrise.

  • Don’t worry… I promised I would watch Before Sunrise before I watched Before Sunset and I did.
  • I just finished it and wrote the post that will accompany it.
  • But that won’t be published until the end of May, assuming I stick to the schedule I have set for myself.
  • So if you don’t want to read about the second part of Richard Linklater’s Before trilogy, wait until May and read that one first.
  • I’ll be sure to link back to this post so you won’t get lost trying to find it.
  • These movies make me want to go to Europe.
  • I mean, not right now… because of 2020.
  • But at some point, I’d like to hop a train and visit all these European locations… Paris… Vienna… Prague… Berlin… Rome… just all over.
  • Before Sunset picks up nine years after the events of Before Sunrise.
  • Jesse has written a book and is on the last stop of his book tour in Paris.
  • The novel, This Time, is based on his experiences with Celine in the first film.
  • He’s asked if the two characters get together six months later, as they promised before saying goodbye in Vienna.
  • Jesse explains that the answer to that question was left ambiguous on purpose, to separate the romantics from the cynics.
  • As he’s wrapping up the Q&A session, he looks to his left and sees Celine watching him from the back of the bookstore.
  • Jesse only has a little time before he has to catch his plane, so he and Celine go for some coffee.
  • On the way to the cafe, she asks if he went to Vienna that December.
  • Obviously, she didn’t… and he says he didn’t either… but his body language gives it all away.
  • Celine explains that her grandmother died a few days before and she just couldn’t get there…
  • And he admits that he was there…
  • They discuss his book and his fictionalized account of their night together.
  • Like the first film, it’s mostly dialogue.
  • Jesse and Celine spend all their time in conversation, catching up on each other’s lives.
  • This makes it kind of hard to do the play by play…
  • I can’t help but have noticed… Jesse is wearing a wedding ring.
  • But more than halfway through this thing, he has yet to mention he’s married.
  • Funny… just as I typed that, Celine brought up the fact that she read that he’s married with a kid.
  • She’s in a relationship with a photojournalist, but not married… no kids of her own.
  • But there’s so much talk about what could have been…
  • Before Sunrise felt so hopeful and optimistic… the sequel almost feels the opposite.
  • Doesn’t make it less good… just sadder in a way.
  • Until the end, that is.
  • Having now seen Before Sunset, it currently ranks at 439 out of 2,243 movies on my personal Flickchart list.

This was a good movie. But I’m pretty sure I liked Before Sunrise better. You’ll find out all about that in May. I’m ready to see Before Midnight, the third and final act in this little trilogy. But it’s not on the list, so that will be considered an extra-curricular activity. Have you seen Before Sunset? Have you seen the entire trilogy? What did you think? Let me know down in the comments! Come back next week for some classic Hitchcock with 1940’s Rebecca.

6 thoughts on “95 – Before Sunset

  1. Pingback: What Are the Best Movies I’ve Never Seen? | The Confusing Middle

  2. I have seen the entire trilogy as I no doubt mentioned before. I agree that the optimistic Before Sunrise was my favorite. However, Before Sunset is a very good follow up. It’s always nice to see a sequel made way later end up just a good. Especially with their whole 9 experiment paying off.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Pingback: 71 – Before Sunrise | The Confusing Middle

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