The third "before" of Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke happens before midnight, just nine years after Before Sunset. Jesse and Celine are now living together parenting twin girls. They live in Paris, having vacations in Greece. Jesse tries to stay in touch with his only sun from previous marriage who actually lives with mom in the US.
Before Midnight is bit different movie from two previous installments. Both of them were as young and frivolous giddy films alike to their main characters, passionate and impulsive, carrying all characteristic of romantic comedy. But this one is more wise movie showing a middle age relationship between a loving couple, the ups and downs of their love and it gives a brilliant look where a desperate love can come to. Before Midnight brings questions that any couple may come up with. On the one hand they are living a great life. Jesse is a successful writer happily living with Celine. But there is something he is missing. Celine feels like she loses connection with him and destroying a decade relationship for no reason.
Movie is very sincere, openly discussing lots of interesting and everyday problems. It actually consists of couple major dialogues that clearly expose whole spirit of plot. There is a dining scene where character discuss their first sexual intercourse or just their sex live and I was surprised how precise, natural and nice each word was. It did not "scream" as it happens in most of films. Each and every other dialogue was a masterpiece, very quiet, peaceful and calmly emotional. The last scene in the bedroom which actually last half an hour, just runs very quickly because of beautifully written script.
Julie & Ethan wrote the screenplay with director Richard Linklater, and they did it even better then before. Everything in the movie speaks for itself - Delpy and Hawke knew what they were doing. There is no much dramatic action or emotional plays in Before Midnight. On the contrary it's very calm and steady one, however still exposes the emotional bondage between main characters.
Julie Delpy gives the best performance compared with two previous. She's great. As if she exactly knows how should Celine look like (well, maybe because she wrote it). Each speech of her is full of pure emotions and sincerity, as though she has lived all those years of Celine, with Jesse. I can make sure that Julie is one of the top contenders in Oscar best actress race. Ethan Hawke's is an fantastic example of good dramatic acting. A man loving a woman of his dreams tries to be a good father to three different children. He really loves the lady he met many many years ago, but also feels obligation towards those who were hurt because of that. I can't make sure predictions about his award year, but he is not bad candidate for trophies at all.
If you have a question why I did not rate this movie with 10 stars, I can tell that it is a fair one. But let me tell this: sometimes I get lost in endless discussions and dialogues. Time by time I started getting bored. For example, a car scene just made me want skipping it. An there are few moments like this. Without them, Before Midnight would be perfection and top movie so far.
However, I still think that it is the best of those three movies and this years one of the remarkable examples of good film making. Totally recommended to watch.