Before Midnight ★★★★★

I saw this at a Press & Industry screening at Sundance. About a half hour before the screening, an executive from a studio showed up. Someone in line asked if he was attached to the film in any way and he said, "No, I'm just here as a fan."

It was that kind of screening.

It's probably impossible for me to have hated this movie. They would have had to spectacularly fuck it up, and there's no reason why they would. They're too smart and it's not like this is a sequel to a film that made $100M.

At the screening, the audience was rapt. People were tearing up before the credits were done. By the end, nearly everyone was.

Is it perfect? No. Not quite. But it does absolutely everything you'd want from this film. It's deeper than SUNSET, more complicated, messier. Nine years have passed. Nine years of baggage. There's much more history now.

There's moments where you feel like you've been stabbed in the heart. And there's moments that are ridiculously funny. And they're in the same scene.

I wanted it to be longer. I wanted it to go on forever.

I talked to a guy in line who said he felt like this series was responsible for the path his life takes, that he needed this next one to tell him what the next nine years would be like. I feel the same way. And I think that's what's so powerful about this series. We all see ourselves in these two, even if we aren't novelists who fall in love with crazy French chicks we met on a train. Moreso than Antoine Doinel, maybe even more so than SCENES FROM A MARRIAGE, this is the mirror of how our lives go. It's essential.

Please come back in another nine years.