Before Sunrise

Metascore
77

Generally favorable reviews - based on 18 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 18
  2. Negative: 0 out of 18

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Critic Reviews

  1. 100
    Before Sunrise speaks as much to the mind as to the heart, and much of what it says is likely to strike a responsive chord -- a rare and special accomplishment for any motion picture.
  2. It's a lovely and wistful celebration of youth, time and moments of connection -- and about the experience of living in the midst of a simple, perfect day that you know you'll remember for the rest of your life.
  3. Before Sunrise is a film that first startles you with its simplicity, then bowls you over with its complexity.
  4. If Linklater goes to a bit of an extreme here, it's in making both characters so intelligent and sincere, so ardent and giving, that they seem a little too good to believe.
  5. Richard Linklater goes Hollywood (1995) -- triumphantly and with an overall intelligence, sweetness, and romantic simplicity that reminds me of wartime weepies like The Clock.
  6. Watching and listening to these two is a charming experience; their conversation has the ring of veracity, and rarely does the viewer's interest stray.
  7. 80
    Though Linklater allows the movie to wander, he never allows the pace to slacken, and more often than not he finds some unexpected bit of found poetry or cultural kitsch to make the digressions worthwhile.
  8. Reviewed by: Ian Nathan
    80
    The overall effect is too intelligent to be soppy and too damn good to be ignored.
  9. 80
    The charm -- the midsummer enchantment -- never feels forced; it steals up and wins you. A true romance.
  10. 75
    Before Sunrise is so much like real life - like a documentary with an invisible camera - that I found myself remembering real conversations I had experienced with more or less the same words.
  11. Delpy and Hawke begin to grow on you and Linklater and his actors achieve a point midway through the film when the characters are so attractive and smart and emotionally daring that you'll be happy to spend the night with them.
  12. Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy are attractive stars, but what's most appealing about the picture is the value it puts on sharing ideas and feelings through language.
  13. What Mr. Linklater does best here is to come up with conversational gambits that have just the right fancifulness to suit this situation.
  14. There's nothing much to the movie, except for the amiability of the actors and the layers of feeling Linklater provides, but that's just almost enough.
  15. The weight of the film rests on the shoulders of Hawke and Delpy, and they're both remarkable.
User Score
8.9

Universal acclaim- based on 212 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 31
  2. Negative: 4 out of 31
  1. Aug 14, 2010
    10
    Beautiful, one of the best films I have ever seen. The naive optimism of love and intelligent honest dialogue was amazing. Anyone who hasBeautiful, one of the best films I have ever seen. The naive optimism of love and intelligent honest dialogue was amazing. Anyone who has fallen in love and has been optimistic of the future will love it. Full Review »
  2. Jul 11, 2013
    8
    (skip to the last paragraph for a concise one-sentence summary and a number)
    Before Sunrise is a film that is magical in a unique way; it
    (skip to the last paragraph for a concise one-sentence summary and a number)
    Before Sunrise is a film that is magical in a unique way; it talks with the viewer. That said, the film does not literally converse with the audience. However, the way the film progresses and the conversations held by the protagonists make us feel like a comfortable third wheel. It’s like we’re walking along by our protagonists (and director Richard Linklater, since he has spilled so much uch of his persona and soul into this artistic venture it feels like we already know him) through Vienna.
    Another highlight of this film is the powerful chemistry that the protagonists share. It’s as if there is an innate connection between the two that has just now been discovered like siblings separated at birth (although not quite for romantic reasons). Their spontaneity and inquisitive, skeptical approach towards life and people clicks like a lock. This pitch-perfect compatibility motivates the film and makes for a very moving conclusion as time runs out before sunrise.
    The film is very talkative, I will not deny that. At some points, it also lingers as the conversations drift into simple chatter and the plotline seems to have no clear direction. However, no moment in the film is wasted, as every conversation further develops each character's personality as well as their sweet relationship.
    In conclusion, this is what I have to say: Before Sunrise is a magical and enlightening gift to anyone who views it and has enough patience to make it through the dragging conversations between its lovers. Before you know it, the film will be talking to you more loudly than the protagonists talk to each other.

    FINAL SCORE: 82.5 (excitingly great -----o--------------- almost perfect)
    Full Review »
  3. Jun 10, 2013
    10
    Céline (Delpy), an easy-going Parisian, is on her way back from Budapest to study at the Sorbonne; Jesse (Hawke), a young American, is at theCéline (Delpy), an easy-going Parisian, is on her way back from Budapest to study at the Sorbonne; Jesse (Hawke), a young American, is at the end of a Eurorail tour. They meet on a train just outside Vienna; by the time they reach the station, they've hit it off well enough for Jesse to propose that Céline spend the next 14 hours wandering the city with him, until his flight leaves for the States. Intrigued, she accepts. So begins an unexpected adventure of the heart. What's magical about Linklater's entrancing movie is the way he and his actors manage to convey the emotional truths that underlie all the talk as the potential lovers test each other's opinions and commitment. Funny, poignant and perceptive, this is a brilliant gem. Full Review »