Before Midnight

Before Midnight ★★★★★

Before Midnight is a powerful, emotional end to one of the greatest trilogies of all time. I've been putting off watching Before Sunset and Before Midnight for so long and now that I've finally watched them both I am left awed by the brilliance of Richard Linklater.

Here we pick up with Celine and Jesse in their 40s coming to the end of their holiday at a Greek resort, which is just as beautiful and as picturesque as Vienna and Paris were in the first two films. Everything is beautifully shot in these movies, and the decision to move away from taking a tour of a city really works in the films' favour, especially with the introduction of more characters in the first act of the movie.

Jesse and Celine are managing twins at the same time while dealing with Jesse's son, who lives with his ex-wife back in Chicago. Jesse expresses a deep regret about not being there for his son and Celine is debating about taking her dream job. It's coming towards one of the most testing times of their marriage, and the film uses this brilliantly to deconstruct the characters to the point where we know far more about them than we did in the first two films.

Hawke and Delpy are fantastic here, although as per usual, they're basically playing themselves. Linklater's storyline is simple and minimalistic in its approach, and as a result, all the more powerful. The dialogue as always is excellent, new and refreshing, even if the characters themselves know much more about each other than when they spontaneously met on a train in Vienna almost ten decades ago.

I probably should have rewatched Before Sunset before I moved onto the second and third movies as they work so well when watched so closely together. I'm definitely going to be doing that the next time I watch these films as there will definitely be a next time.

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