This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Ella’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
#1 on my '2013 Ranked' list
"It’s not perfect, but it’s real."
Yes, I saw it two days in a row. It's that good.
I feel the same about this as I do the others- it's amazing and wonderful and astounding the first time, but just gets BETTER WITH EVERY VIEWING. It just continues to unfold and become more inviting and entertaining and real, just wrapping you up in it's wonders. Not watching any clips (I had to watch the trailer though), reading any spoilers, only knowing ONE LINE ("I fucked up my whole life because of the way you sing". That got me though two weeks haha), avoiding every gif, screencap, spoiler riddled article/review/interview (Jimmy Fallon, you're the best. Most spoiler free interview ever) really pays. It just adds to enjoyment and allows you to go in totally blind and not knowing what is going to go down. Definitely something I'll be willing myself to do again in the future. I don't want to just gush and gush and gush and try to remember every minute moment that I just loved and was perfectly measured, because we'd be here all day and I'd have to keep coming back to edit this as I remember stuff haha. Rather, I want to talk about something that RopeOfSilicon talked about in his review that was just a massive 'YES' moment for me: "there is a perfect time for all of us to step into Celine and Jesse's lives and a selection of three films with which to begin the journey. Determining which of the three to start with is up to you, but for me I'm not sure their story would mean as much had I not met them exactly when I did. For this reason I feel strange reviewing Before Midnight as merely a movie, or at least I don't want to treat it as one". This is exactly how I feel about these films- if I hadn't discovered them this year, I think I'd feel differently, and they wouldn't mean as much to me. They've been such a source of joy and wonder and positivity in my life, something that will always make me smile, no matter what over the past few months. I just turn the films on and bam, I'm smiling. It's like magic. I was having this discussion with one of my friends a while back after she watched Before Sunset for the first time- so many things that are discussed/said in these films are relevant and relatable, even though it's not in the same context most of the time. It just really resonates with you. Example- in the car scene in Before Sunset, Celine says: "I would've said no, but at least they could have asked!". While I'm certainly not even close to thinking about marriage or relationships, this is just something that really hits home for me, that I can really relate to. There's many times in my life I've felt like that. There's just so many moments in these films that do that. It's just raw and not "perfect, but it's real". There's so much honesty and real thoughts and emotions. This film really, really hurts. It gets you right in the heart, and doesn't let go. The insults, the arguments, the confessions, it's all just so painful. But just so good. The fight plays out exactly like how people fight- it isn't all over with in two minutes, people storm out, come back, reconcile a bit, start to fight again, it goes on for ages and ages and ages. There's no fabrication or rushed feel about it, it plays out perfectly. There's no better way to describe my feelings about these films than that they've changed my life, my thinking, and have been such a wonderful presence in my life as of late. I just want to write how amazing and fitting and how much love I have for them forever. In fact, it's not just a film. It does something very few have done- I feel like I've gotten to know Celine and Jesse this year, and that they're my friends. I can't wait to meet up with them as I rewatch these many, many times, and hopefully catch up with them again in nine-or-so years.
It needs to get nominated for Best Picture and Celine snoring needs to be one of the clips in the montage. End of story.
(Also now my recently watched field is ALL THE BEFORE FILMS. Perfect. And my favourite films is literally "one of these things is not like the other" haha)