I’m always searching for movies with well-written dialogue. Because words are powerful. They connect us—to a book, a song, a person, and to a lot of things. Connection is the essence of life. It’s one of the things that makes us human, and this 1995 film perfectly captures the reality of having that instant connection with another person.
Directed by: Richard Linklater
Starring Ethan Hawke (Jesse) and Julie Delpy (Celine), the movie starts with a couple arguing on the train. Because of the disturbance, Celine—a girl traveling back to Paris—moves farther into the carriage and takes the seat opposite the aisle to Jesse. Both are reading a book (an excellent start, I must say), which later sparked into the most relatable conversation in the entire history of movies.
One thing you’d notice about this movie is the depth despite the simplicity. There are no fancy effects nor heavy drama, just pure rawness. And I think that’s what makes it so unforgettable. This movie shows how spontaneity could lead to one of the most memorable moments of your life. Just like how Celine agreed to hop out of the train and spend more time with Jesse in Vienna because she knew that what they have is something that doesn’t happen often. They then spent the entire day walking the streets of Vienna while talking about life, love, and everything in between.
“But loving someone, and being loved means so much to me. We always make fun of it and stuff. But isn’t everything we do in life a way to be loved a little more?”— Celine (Before Sunrise)
It also tells the importance of living in the moment. Because that’s what they did; they lived in that day, talked all night and savored every minute they’re together without the pressure of what might happen in the future. And by sunrise, they let each other go, trusting that they will meet again.
Bonus! A poem from Before Sunrise.
While strolling along the river, a guy on a tiny boat approached Jesse and Celine. In exchange for money, he offered to write them a poem and then let them choose a word in which he would base the poem from. And so they chose the word milkshakes.
Oh, baby with your pretty face
Drop a tear in my wineglass
Look at those big eyes
See what you mean to me
Sweetcakes and milkshakes
I am a delusion angel
I am a fantasy parade
I want you to know what I think
Don’t want you to guess anymore
You have no idea where I came from
We have no idea where we’re going
Lodged in life
Like two branches in a river
Caught in the current
I’ll carry you, you’ll carry me
That’s how it could be
Don’t you know me?
Don’t you know me by now?