Romantic Encounters and Before Sunrise

A Review 18 Years Too Late
Just got into the “Before” series and I know…i know …how? Well my excuse is I am still young and my background did not let me.
This post is a spoiler galore for anyone who has not watched Before Sunrise.

Before Sunrise
Before Sunrise is the perfect romantic fantasy in my opinion. I mean handsome man, beautiful woman meet on a train and spend a great day together. That is what stories you tell your grandchildren “are made of”. Who has not fantasized about meeting the love of their life spontaneously and instantly getting that connection many people dream of? It was a pleasure dwelling in this romance fantasy world for a while and watching these two interesting people get to know one another. I wonder if you found that person you really connect on a train in Europe would you really agree to spend the day with them in another country? Would you really take that chance? I think most of us would like to think that we would be that spontaneous, adventurous or even daring but I do not know. Would I? This is a movie I feel could have easily gone the other way and by the other way it could have turned out bad and cheesy.

Upfront, Celine played by the wonderful Julie Delpy says she is not out to fulfill some male fantasy. That is “meet a French girl on a train, fuck her, never see her again and have a great story to tell”. So, we have gotten rid of that trope/stereotype very quickly. Vienna becomes a blank slate for both characters Jesse and Celine because the two do not have any history there (I hope I am right). Anyway, in Vienna they can form their own story and history, which is great. The more time they spend together the more the walls and barriers begin to fall away as expected. Maybe the barriers fall away because they are strangers and there are no repercussions for revealing one’s deepest fears?

“I guess when you’re young you you just believe there will be many people with whom you connect … Later in life, you realize it only happens a few times.” — Celine

The story is not rushed it flows organically as I would imagine it would in real-time and in real life. It explores how quickly love can sneak up on us when we are least expecting it. In the film, they talk and talk, in fact most of the film is of them talking and it is refreshing. It is a story of conversations. In my last post , I talk about making the ordinary extraordinary and I feel the Before series is a prime example of that. How does a film featuring only two characters exploring Vienna become the spectacular beginnings of a wonderful love story?

I am interested in stories and people who make the mundane interesting and I think Linklater the director does a wonderful job. The film sometimes feels like I am intruding on the intimacy of these two characters. At the end of the film, the characters promise to meet in six months time and we all know how that goes.

Next installment will be before sunset; do not know when I would write that. It happens when it happens.
A big thank you to new followers!! 🙂
See you next time!

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