Before Midnight

Before Midnight ★★★½

How do you fit an entire relationship in to the single span of a film? By making that film "Before Midnight". The film follows Jesse (Ethan Hawke) and Celine (Julie Deply) during a single day while Jesse, a well known writer, is holidaying in Greece with Celine, their twin girls and Jesse's son Hank from a previous, and clearly tumultuous previous marriage.

The film is chock full of long shots which are absolutely packed with huge amounts of dialog. Of course no real couple, at least ones I know, pack as much as they have in to day without burning out in double quick time. Hawke and Deply chatter on to each other like half an old married couple and half like two people who are just discovering each other for the first time. The course of the film takes us through what can only be the ups and downs of a long term relationship packed in to this brief tiny span.

It's a lovely window in to this not quite real couple but Hawke and Deply play their parts wonderfully. Especially I feel Hawke does a better job veering between self-doubt, joy, frustration and simple love.

My only criticism is that there's no little physical contact while the couple talks which I'm sure is deliberate but doesn't quite make sense with the rest of the intensity of the conversation.