July 02, 2004
I've always had a soft spot for Richard Linklater's Before Sunrise. Before Sunset follows up with the characters nine years later. A passage of interest from A. O. Scott's review in the NYT:
Can't these people just get to the point, you may find yourself wondering, stealing a glance at your watch. Can't they just say what they mean? Can you? Language, after all, is not just about points and meanings. It is a medium of communication, yes, but also of avoidance, misdirection, self-protection and plain confusion, all of which are among the themes of this movie, which captures a deep truth seldom acknowledged on screen or in books: people often talk because they have nothing to say.
I feel I can express myself more clearly in writing. But then there's not the give and take of conversation, the interaction of speaking in real time, of communicating with another person. But it can be hard to say what one means, especially if the subject is difficult, when something important is at stake. But what matters is that we try, because words aren't always the only things that can be expressed. Sometimes there aren't words. But there are still ways to talk to people about what we think and how we feel.