It has been nine years since we last met Jesse and Celine, the French-American couple who once met on a train in Vienna. They now live in Paris with twin daughters, but have spent a summer in Greece on the invitation of an author colleague of Jesse's. When the vacation is over and Jesse must send his teenage son off to the States, he begins to question his life decisions, and his relationship with Celine is at risk. Written by
Peter Brandt Nielsen
'Midnight' beats 'Sunset' and 'Sunrise' on its relevance - truly a masterpiece in acting, story and script.
I was lucky enough to get tickets for the one of the Before Midnight- screenings at the Berlin Film Festival this year.
Being a big fan of both Before Sunrise and Before Sunset, I was truly thrilled to see this new (last?) chapter of Jesse and Celine's relationship.
To sum up the story shortly without spoiling too much, we meet Jesse and Celine 9 years after the events of Sunset. They are now a couple with a pair of twin daughters, and Jesse is struggling to adapt to the role of being a separated father for his son, Hank, having him fly several times back and forth between the United States and France, where Jesse lives with Celine and the daughters. On the last day of their vacation in Greece, Jesse and Celine are trying to find the spark in their relationship again - we are dealing with a couple, like so many others, who in their 'middleage crisis' start asking themselves "where am I in my life, why do I live it this way, and does my husband/wife still love me?".
For me, the relevance of the film, is its force, along with of course the acting and the script, which Hawke and Delpy again have written together with Linklater. Hawke and Delpy are so much into their characters and you feel how deep their relationship is established - it feels very natural and just like watching a couple in the 21st century. We live in a world where couple's separate, find a new partner, get children, separates again, find a new partner, get new children again (maybe this is a bit extreme, but something like that). Both the husband and wife have jobs and their relationships are affected when suddenly, the only things they are dealing with his who gets the groceries, who picks up the children from the kindergarten etc., and the love and romance between one another slowly fades away. That's the relevance to the age we live in now, that is so strong in Midnight.
I can highly recommend fans of the two first movies to see it, and if you are not familiar with the movies, you are certainly in for a treat! In my eyes, Midnight works very well for as an end to a trilogy, but the door is of course a little open for another sequel 9 years in the future (2022...?)
Again, the acting is superb (the entire hotel scene is magnificent!), and dialog is so grounded, natural and strong and the film has relevance and could inspire a lot of couples struggling with their relationship to their partner.
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