Before We Go (2014)
Running Time: 95 minutes
Directed by: Chris Evans
Starring: Chris Evans, Alice Eve, Emma Fitzpatrick, John Cullum
Before We Go starts with Brooke (Eve) missing the 1.30 am train from New York to Boston after having her purse stolen. She then meets a trumpet player, Nick (Evans) who is busking at Grand Central station. Through the night, they face a series of unexpected adventures that allows them to learn about one another, confront their own fears and take control of their own lives.
This romantic film with a sprinkle of comedy pays homage to great two-character, walking-and-talking romance films such as Linklater’s Before… trilogy. From the start of the film till the end, the indie vibe and handheld camera type of cinematography never left the screen, reminding me of great indie romance films such as Like Crazy. Set in New York City, the audience is only given a glimpse of the beautiful night landscape, probably better locations could be picked to highlight the vibe of the city in the film, since it plays a role in the film as well. The writing, though not bad, wasn’t as compelling and insightful as that of Linklater’s Before… trilogy. It introduces the characters gently through the film, putting them in various scenarios that allows us to learn more about the leading actors and the crossroads and complications they each face in their own lives. I did like the first and second act of the film’s dialogue but became acutely aware of its reliance on some great indie songs and montage of the characters’ expressions to highlight the scene’s emotions.
However, what really made the film worked for me is the chemistry between Evans and Eve and their solid performances through the film. They embodied the characters perfectly and carried the film to the best of their abilities. Furthermore, I thought this was a rather good directorial debut for Evans. Also a quick shoutout to the Chris Westlake who did a great job with putting together a list of indie songs that complemented the film really well.
Overall, Before We Go is a character-driven romance film that highlights on the crossroads that we all face at a certain point in our lives. Definitely recommend this to anyone who loves a good romance film that focuses on a handful of characters only, and to fans of films such as Linklater’s Before… trilogy, Lost in Translation and Like Crazy.
Rating: 6 out of 10