Before Sunrise; Before Sunset; Before Midnight

*note that I have quite literally had this in my “drafts” for 6+ months…*

Before Sunrise (1995); Before Sunset (2004); Before Midnight (2013): Featuring Ethan Hawke & Julie Deply

There is no simple way to describe how outstanding this trilogy is (note that I’ve been trying to write this post since the summer). While it is clear that the best way to enjoy these films is in the correct order, I ended up viewing the third, then the first and finally the second. It wasn’t on purpose, that’s just the order in which I found out each existed. Clearly I wasn’t on my movie A game. Regardless, in whichever order you view them, you won’t be disappointed.

These minimalistic films are amazing because of just that: their simplicity. The dialogue is easy and the characters relatable. We see Ethan Hawke grow from a dirty college student traveling abroad with a dream of becoming a writer, to a father and novelist who continues to travel abroad. Deply’s character is similar, in that we first see her as a shy university student, who then blossoms into a mother of twin girls, while also finding herself at a career crossroads. Seeing the timeline of their lives is one of my favorite themes of this trilogy.

The lapse in years between each film’s release date is exactly the same as the lapse in the actual movie (each movie was filmed 9 years after the previous, and the storyline was written with the actual 9 years passing). It amazes me that the characters change in appearance is precisely how it should be and the events that were to have occurred during the breaks match up perfectly. I  hate when a sequel comes out a year or two later and the characters have either aged 10 years, or not at all. The way Richard Linklater* produced these films makes them seem even more genuine and authentic. He has quickly become one of my absolute favorite directors/screenwriters/producers.

Rating: 7 stars (out of 5)

*Linklater’s other astounding and critically acclaimed movies include Dazed and Confused, Boyhood, and Slacker, just to name a few.

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Like Crazy

Like Crazy (2011): Featuring Felcity Jones, Anton Yelchin & Jennifer Lawrence

A good friend of mine has been harassing me to see this film for the past year, so I when I saw it as a suggestion on Netflix, I figured that it was the perfect time.  While I knew what I was getting into before I pressed play (the film poster says it all), I didn’t think that I would be left with so many questions and such an empty feeling inside. These feelings also came with the expected: wanting to hurl myself infront of oncoming traffic. Totally casual.

The movie begins with two college students on different tracks in life, meeting and quickly falling in love (totally wish I had an attractive TA in any of my 4 years of college. Whatever.). Anna, played by the amazingly beautiful Felicity Jones, is a fantastic writer and “woos” Jacob, played by Anton Yelchin, with her words.  I’m sure he’s also a fan of her sexy-as-hell British accent.  They do so many amazing things and it’s so fabulous and they are so in love and it’s just like a magic unicorn threw up it’s magical dinner all over the place. Then TSA shits all over the fan.

Anna is supposed to go home to London for the summer in order to renew her Visa and see her family, but she decides that her time would be better spent living out the warm summer days with Jacob in California.  Unfortunately, the US frowns upon people living here illegally. So when Anna finally takes her trip back home and tries to return to the US, she is accosted by security and is told that she is not allowed back. During the next few years, Anna and Jacob realize the problem with long distance relationships and continue to try and find a way to make it work (I wish a guy would just randomly jump on a plane and fly halfway across the world to see me).  Also, Jenny Lawrence makes a cameo over this time and it’s amazing because I love her and I want to be her best friend.  But besides that, what they go through is hard and it’s not pretty, but true love always finds a way- or at least it does in the movies.

As I sat on my couch (alone) watching the credits role, I couldn’t help but wonder what the ending meant.  I’m not sure if I’m playing too into it, or if I’m supposed to be racking my brain about what happened, but either way it is still bothering me a month later.  Why was I left with so many questions? Well, I don’t want to ruin the ending for you, so you’re going to have to see it for yourself.  If/when you do, can you please get back to me, because like what the fuck?

Rating: 5 stars