Sept. 30, 2016
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Love and Resentment

Celine and Jesse return in 'Before Midnight'

June 11, 2013, 12:00 am

Nine years after Before Sunset, Celine (Julie Delpy) and Jesse (Ethan Hawke) return for a glimpse of their relationship. At just past 40, they’re both more real, fleshed out and irritating than they were in Before Sunset, but they’re nowhere near as irritating as the two dopes they were in their early 20s in Before Sunrise

Celine and Jesse are now together and parents of twin daughters. We catch up with them in Greece as Jesse sees his son off at the airport following an extended family vacation. The couple has dinner with friends then heads off for a quiet night at a hotel by the sea.

Of course, life isn’t quiet when we want it to be, and the couple gets into the kind of argument that has relationship-ending implications. We also see just how angry and irrational Celine can be, while Jesse is withdrawn and lackadaisical. Of course, they also know how to push each other’s buttons, which doesn’t help once they’re into their row. 

All the longing and regret of Before Sunset has been replaced with consequences and resentment. How much you enjoy it will depend how you see it—as a couple near its end or fighting for its survival.

BEFORE MIDNIGHT
Directed by Richard Linklater
With Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy
UA DeVargas Mall Cinema 6
108 min.
R

 

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