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“Reality Bites” Star Revisited

Remember how we all loved Ethan Hawke’s character in “Reality Bites?”  It was his first big breakout role, though some of you may remember him in “Dead Poets Society” as well.  

Ethan Hawke at Directors Guild Of America on May 21, 2013 in Los Angeles, California. (Frederick M. Brown; Getty Images Entertainment)

Well, I must have been living under a rock since then because this actor and writer has been doing some great work over the years and I never realized it, until recently.  I’m most excited to tell you about a series of three films which you may not have seen:  ”Before Sunrise,” “Before Sunset,” and “Before Midnight.”

After seeing “Before Midnight” in the movie theatre recently, we got really curious about the previous films in the series so we watched both of them at home.  Hawke and his co-star, Julie Delpy portray a couple who meet on a train, get to know each other, fall in love, then deal with the challenges of relationships, exes, children, distance, and their decisions.

I don’t want to give too much away but suggest that you might want to rent these films or get them “on-demand” from your cable provider.  Warning:  these movies are different from your typical summer blockbusters.   There are no explosions; no car crashes, and no aliens.  Each film is loaded with dialogue.  Lots of it.

The main characters talk and talk and talk, but their conversations seem so real, I felt like I was eavesdropping on these two lovers.  Though it’s not necessary to see all three films, I’d suggest you do so if you are looking for a different kind of movie watching experience.

I’d also recommend starting at the beginning with “Before Sunrise” which originally came out in 1995.  The next film, ‘Before Sunset,” was released in 2004.  It gives you an opportunity to catch up with the two main characters and explore how their feelings for each other may or may not have changed.  (My only complaint about this one was that it was too short at only 1 hour and 20 minutes.)

Earlier this year “Before Midnight” was in theatres so it should soon be coming out on DVD.  Remember, these films are dialogue-heavy with zero special effects, so they may not appeal to everyone in your house.  But if you are in the mood for some refreshingly different movie fare, I’d give the “Before” series two thumbs up.    Have you seen any of these films?  What did you think?

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