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Before Sunset

I’ve always had a place in my heart for the little indie movie “Before Sunrise,” which came out back in 1995. I caught it on Showtime or Cinemax or one of those channels and I was immediately transfixed. Starring Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy, the movie meandered around Europe tracking two strangers learning about each other and falling in love. Richard Linklater, more commonly known for “School of Rock” and “Dazed and Confused,” co-wrote and directed this character study that left you wondering what happened to the characters’ futures and what did your guess mean with relation to your view on romantic love.

Before Sunset” is a case where a sequel is an outstanding idea, at least in its final form. I had not watched “Sunrise” for a long time, and once again I was jarred by how different this movie was to view. Hawke has written a book about his experiences as were depicted in “Sunrise” and Delpy has seen publicity for his press junket in Paris. (Both Hawke and Delpy co-wrote this time with Linklater.) She attends his small press conference and in real time spends 80 minutes with Hawke before he is to leave for the airport to return home. Some may say dialogue this extensive is more appropriate to a book. I can’t totally disagree, but the environment is important as well. To go with it, the reactions of the actors are key to the audience’s emotional connection, and I felt Hawke and Delpy did a wonderful job in this case.

That’s about all I’ll say. Rent “Sunrise” sometime when your in the mood to sit in on one of those nights when a couple learns as much about each other as they ever could on a second date. Later, but not too much later, revisit Hawke and Delpy as they reflect on that one-day stand and learn about each other all over again. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.