Before Midnight

Before Midnight ★★★½

I fucked up my whole life because of the way you sing.

Great news, your boy's got food poisoning. Feeling better, yet still not feeling good, but I wanted to watch at least one movie today, so here we go. Even if I don't think this is close to being a favorite trilogy, the Before series has maybe the most interesting progression I've seen across a series of films. The original is full romance, the second one is a middle-ground between romance and realism, and Before Midnight is full, unflinching realism. Although Before Sunset is still definitely my favorite in the series, this has likely the best performances from Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy. That level of maturity from the past film is expanded on here. Jesse and Celine are well into their relationship, and the grand love is clearly fading away. If you've ever wanted to see a romance film where a large chunk of it is an extended, escalating argument between the two leads, Richard Linklater has you covered. This desperately wants to be an 8/10 film for me, and it comes close, but I do have my issues with it. There is no real reason for this film to be an hour and fifty minutes. It felt as though since this is very likely the final Before film, every piece of dialogue that could possibly be thrown into this is there, and because of that, some scenes go on for longer than they should. That prevents me from giving the movie a higher rating, but make no mistake, I had a notably good time with this. It was interesting to find myself smiling and even laughing during the more emotionally intense moments of the film, because even if it feels overstuffed, a lot of the dialogue is very strong. Well worth going down the rabbit hole of this series if you were like me and slacking on it, offering a true glimpse into all that love has to offer, good and bad.

7.5/10

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