CAN THE GREATEST ROMANCE OF YOUR LIFE LAST ONLY ONE NIGHT?
Jesse and Celine (Ethan Hawke, Julie Delpy) strike up a connection on a train; they get off together in Vienna and spend the night strolling in the city and talking. Director Richard Linklater was inspired by a night in Philadelphia that he once spent with a woman; they couldn’t stop talking. The set-up for this movie version of that night is simple, but making a talk fest work on screen is a tougher challenge… that pays off. The feeling that this is a unique moment, a love affair that is all about the here and now pervades the movie. Conversations revolve around cynicism and innocence, differences between men and women, thoughts about the future. The leads are terrific.
1995-U.S. 101 min. Color. Produced by Anne Walker-McBay. Directed by Richard Linklater. Screenplay: Richard Linklater, Kim Krizan. Cast: Ethan Hawke (Jesse), Julie Delpy (Celine).
Trivia: The characters also appeared in Waking Life (2001) as well as two sequels, starting with Before Sunset (2004).
Berlin: Best Director.
Last word: “This film has absolutely nothing to do with American culture. In a way it’s American, but it’s kind of a European film. It has no pop culture reference, no hit soundtrack. It’s just much more simple. It’s just two people. It could have been made 50 years ago, I like to think.” (Linklater, MovieMaker)