23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars
Love hurts - for the characters and for us, 15 Oct. 2013
There is no doubt that Before Midnight is difficult viewing, especially for those who have vested so much in the characters through the first two films. Like many reviewers and critics, I mourn the loss of innocence and heady romance of the first two brief encounters, but understand the need for the relationship to follow its natural course, otherwise it would simply not be believable. And so we, with the privilege of viewing an intimate relationship at close quarters, witness tensions in private that would not otherwise be visible in public. As far as Jesse and Celine's friends in the film are concerned, the romance continues. And so it does, but with fractures that may, or may not, be terminal. This is the normality of long-term relationships that the writers and Director know is vital to portray at this stage in the characters' lives. What it means is that Before Midnight is but a point in time, and the next film - for there must be one for the story to follow its natural course - will bring Celine and Jesse to a yet another level. So, difficult viewing yes, but all part of a journey. Stick with it, and marvel at the dialogue, wonderfully subtle body language, nuanced supporting roles, and the sheer authenticity of the whole enterprise.