Thursday, July 01, 2004

Intellectual flirting....

Of course, just my luck. "Before Sunset" opens tomorrow and it has a limited release. I was planning on spending my birthday totally whacked out in the theatre, bawling, sipping on my doctored libation, having terse, meatphysical awakenings and eye-opening epiphanies, realizing that its myself on screen (the Ethan Hawke charachter has become a novelist--go figure)....oh well, my friend Shannon gave me a free ticket to Farenheit 9/11 and my new mantra for the pending election is this: John Kerry's just like a condom-it may be uncomfortable but for your own health you sometimes have wear one. Kerry's political antics may be initially uncomfortable to the earlobe but for the time being, we have to vote for him.

Anyway, work still sucks (or my bosses cudgeled lip is sucking the life outta me!) Uncle Mike and I have been moving. Our house is a mess, our lawn needs to be mowed and our 'tractor' lawn mower we inherited has a dull blade. Life is sometimes perfect in its domestic turbulence--don't you think?

Here's what Mercury News says about Before Sunset:




In "Before Sunset," Celine and Jesse also achieve a sort of peace together. As fans will remember, at the end of "Before Sunrise," they left each other at the train station in Vienna without exchanging last names or addresses, but with a promise to meet again in six months (from June 16, which James Joyce readers will note is Bloomsday) at that very same spot.

From the beginning of "Before Sunset," it's clear that they did not meet again in Vienna. But Jesse is open about the fact that he never got over it: In fact, he has just written a highly romantic novel about their experience. He's on a book tour, doing a reading at Paris' Shakespeare & Co., when she shows up. He's bowled over; she's outwardly casual. They have about an hour before he has to catch his plane back to New York.


What's unusual about "Before Sunset" is that while it is the sexiest movie to come along in years, the actual physical interaction between Celine and Jesse is kept to the barest minimum. Any seduction is within the mind and, as a result, it's a study in subtlety. Linklater, working in real time - the couple has only 80 minutes together this time, in contrast to their full day and night together in Vienna in 1994 - has managed to capture that unique tension between human beings on the edge of touching, but not quite there.

"The goal was actually to capture that moment before anything happens," said Delpy, calling from her home in Los Angeles to talk about the film. "All that flirting, but not the obvious flirting, the kind of more intellectual kind of flirting."

Maybe that's because desire, an emotion best displayed in our eyes, has become a commodity, a commodity co-opted by an immature pop culture revolving around gyrating teenagers with impossibly perfect, oiled-up bodies. Movie desire has to look like the desire portrayed in ad campaigns: chiseled features, tousled hair, a Versace number cut down to here. Linklater and his two stars have deliberately made a movie that refutes that.

2 comments:

daku said...

interesting. didn't know it was old Linklater - but the dude is wordy (in a good way) so it makes sense. i'm more curious to see it now, but i still have some inexplicable doubt about it. maybe it scares me because it's real?

David Von Behren said...

Honestly daniela, the first movie was the only valid definition of TRUE love I've ever witnessed....