Before Sunrise, Before Sunset

“Before Sunrise” and “Before Sunset” screenplays by Richard Linklater, Ethan Hawke, and Julie Delpy. Story by Richard Link Later and Kim Krizan.
(Films released in 1995 and 2004 / This edition of the screenplays: Vintage Books 2005)
Taken during a coffee break at a street-side cafe in Khaosarn with Mom and Aunt.

Celine: I guess when you are young, you believe that you will meet many people with whom you’ll connect with,
but later in life you realize it only happens a few times.

I was thinking that my first blog post would be about my favorite book…Unfortunately, a huge portion of my favorites (of my favorite-ests) are in a cardboard box somewhere in Tokyo waiting to be shipped, and we probably won’t reunite until September.

So. I got the screenplays of “Before Sunrise” and “Before Sunset” a few weeks ago. When hearing those two titles (or the more recent, “mainstream” one—the third of the trilogy: “Before Midnight”), most people will think of the films…reflecting on Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy, walking talking walking talking through the streets of Vienna and Paris. Young audiences dream of romantic encounters on trains. People that have taken philosophy class in high school and university (*ahem.*) try to philosophize the conversations/dialogues. Audiences that “have gone through similar experiences” or “understand those feelings” feel emotional… (“emotional” meaning happy, depressed, bitter…I guess it depends on their experiences). In other words, these films…tug hard on your heartstrings. SO hard.

Not many people know about the printed, physical copies of the screenplays that you can buy and own—I didn’t even know until I absentmindedly typed it on Goodreads instead of on the Google search bar. Immediately ordered it on Book Depository, and waited impatiently for seventeen days for it to appear in my mailbox. And some might wonder why I’d even want this book when I’ve seen the films at least a hundred times each and I know both Jessie and Celine’s lines by heart, as if I was actually there walking with them. Stop wondering why. I just love the conversations in the films so much—sometimes I just turn on the film, and leave it running in the background while I do stuff around the house.

I watched “Before Sunrise” the first time (back in 2009), during my senior year of high school. I think the films came into my life at the crucial timing of the transition from “high school student” to “university student / learning to become more adult”. Watching the films again when I was finishing university also changed some of my thoughts, especially after “Before Midnight” came out. Most of the dialogue affected (and is still affecting) me—my perspectives on life, friends, relationships, life and death, family, and the confusing and overwhelming concept of “fate”. And despite having the useful talent of being to recite all the dialogues…reading the words made an even stronger impact and actually got me more in touch with the characters and more in touch with myself.

I realize my first book post is becoming more like my first film post the more I write, SO…(abrupt ending) here are some of my favorite lines from the screenplay/film. If you haven’t seen the films yet, I recommend watching them first, and THEN read the screenplays.

Celine: But for some people, there are no real good-byes. I think if you have a meaningful experience with someone else, a true communication, they are with you forever in a way. We are all a part of each other in ways we’ll never know. (p.92)

Celine: There was this famous writer—I don’t remember who—who said the ideal relationship was two intense years, with clean breaks, fresh starts, friends for life, something like that. It’s like if you knew your relationship had to end in two years, there would be no room for fighting or wasted time. There could be more love and appreciation for one another. It’s like, if everyone you met you knew was going to die at midnight, you would be a much more compassionate person. I mean, everyone’s going to die, but since no one knows when, there’s all the time in the world to be assholes to one another. (p.91)

Jessie: A memory’s never finished, if you really think about it. (p.162)


6 thoughts on “Before Sunrise, Before Sunset

  1. Great post! I’m obsessed with the film trilogy after discovering it last year in my last year of high school too! I think the movies are teaching me to think about new ways to look at the world, they’re giving me ideas about life that I’m not sure I would have discovered on my own. I also think they’re a group of movies that you can grow up with; like for instance now as a uni student I feel more connected to Before Sunrise, and maybe as I get older I’ll become closer to Before Sunset and Midnight.


    1. Yes, I agree with you—they are movies you grow up with. I think they have influenced and will influenced a lot of the way I think about life, relationships, love, etc.
      My heart was hurting so much during Before Midnight—and it definitely makes me worry and sort of “dread” family life. But I guess it’s good to see family life so brutally but “realistically” portrayed like that (even though, of course, every family is different), so it kind of gives me a heads-up too.

      But all in all…..I’m glad they met on the train to Vienna and that they reunited again in Paris. 🙂

      Thank you for visiting my blog! 🙂
      – Nina

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Nina! I found your blog 🙂 what an awesome space you have: books and flowers. I find a kindred spirit in you that way hehe. And i love your first entry!! I’m actually a HUUUUGE fan of Before Sunrise and Before Sunset ❤ ❤ ❤ reading this was such a delight! Gladly i've just started reading and i look forward to more of your beautiful posts 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahh! Thank you so much!!! 😀 This makes me so happy! 🙂 Thank you, thank you 🙂
      Yes, I love those films so much! Have you seen “Before Midnight” too? 🙂


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