Linklater’s Fairytale Trilogy – The Before Series


Richard Linklater, Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke are director and actors who have created a cult image in the Before Sunrise, Before Sunset and Before Midnight trilogy, comparable to the captivating and long-standing cult film Dirty DancingIt begins with a study of the magnetic attraction between two lone travelers on a train which ultimately draws, in the same hypnotic fashion, an unsuspecting audience into the vicarious fascination of foreplay between the spellbound characters. Often these types of “keyhole” views on human love and attraction are only a pleasant diversion that is designed to complement the main and more serious theme in a film. But Richard Linklater cut out the unnecessary periphery and sacrificed any complicated and compelling plot to put the center of attention on the subjects as they do their romantic dance through the glorious streets and parks of Vienna. That is how they captured our hearts in the first of the three fascinating glimpses into the lives of these fictional heroes of personal love.

One might expect to see extremely overt interconnections between the three natal charts, but that is not the case on a superficial first look. So let’s look deeper. linklater_hawke_delpy2

Julie Delpy’s horoscope is in the middle wheel because it is the only one of the three whose birth time is known to the public. This puts her at center stage as the planets of the others are dropped into her chart’s houses.

There is a powerful connection between Linklater’s Pluto and Delpy’s Mars. It is an exact contact that has Delpy’s Mars making the opposition aspect. She represents Linklater’s subconscious projection of almost ideal and fairly-like creatures that portray his private vision of the magical world of the lovers’ characteristic and continual juxtaposing.

Delpy’s Mars creates a spark of classic Botticelli beauty which supports the dream-like romantic point of the film. Linklater’s natal Pluto degree is A man dreaming of fairies. It is one of the handful of elfin degrees in the Sabian symbol series that points to a person in touch with higher and subtler forms of perception. All of his films project this undercurrent of an otherworldly imagination.

These three creative individuals had the vision to take their audience through three stages of a normal relationship but in a way that is vicariously compelling. We unrelentingly hold to our hopes that they find fulfillment on screen as it offers hope for our own rewards in relationships of personal love.

A personal mirroring of excitement in love is shown in Hawke’s Mars very close to Delpy’s Uranus. The story has her always just a little bit distant (Uranus) from him as he is always in gentle pursuit of her (Mars). The conjunction is appropriate in the sign of Libra which is the sign indicating direct one-on-one relationships with others.


richard-linklater-julie-delpy-ethan-hawke-for-before-midnightLinklater’s Sun also sextile’s Delpy’s Uranus so the three creatives’ are brought together. Here, together they manifest Delpy’s Uranus degree, Three old masters hanging in an art gallery. From Jones’ mimeographed series it is Three old masters hang together in an art gallery; they have a room to themselves and seem to hold converse. In an interview with the two actors and director, they spoke proudly of having to meet together in their private rooms to create the storyline for the romantic drama. This shows the fascinating connection between the symbolic world of Sabian symbols and real-life manifestation.

Libra 9 Three old masters hanging in an art gallery This is a symbol of man’s capacity for embracing a universal reality within his own personal experience. Here is representation of the fundamental faculties of self-expression as they may be established in effective alignment with each other, thereby furthering every pertinent aspect of human potentiality. Implicit is the concept of the past and the present as irrevocably in partnership, every individual’s heritage providing him with a foundation for the achievement he desires. The keyword is ACCORD. When positive, the degree is a gift for bringing people and events together in high appreciation of the greater values of life, and when negative, idle worship of tradition and destructive self-contemplation.

Linklater’s Mars opposite Hawkes Neptune is important because the initiative of the director puts the actor in the role on the silver screen. Hawke’s Mars is the reflective symbol of not only the first scene in Before Sunset, but shows a reflection of the actor’s real-life work as a writer. It also literally points to his first acting role in Dead Poets Society. The symbol for Mars in 11 Libra is: A kindly old professor from his battered desk peers over his eyeglasses at a class eagerly awaiting his words.


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