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The Life Before This(1999)

September. 15,1999
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Several innocent persons are hurt after two robbers, fleeing from the police, run into a neighborhood cafe.

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I was floored by the simple idea that is the basis for this movie, "Some things almost never happen." and how that was acted out in the every day lives of the characters. How the smallest choices that you make -- walking into a restaurant or not, taking a job, having a drink, not answering the phone -- can make such a huge difference in a person's life. I came away from the movie thinking that it isn't always the obviously huge decisions you make in your life that make up who you are...those are important, but so are the decisions that you make every day. The actors and actresses didn't overact -- nothing was overdone or cheesy -- the music was quiet and undramatic. I especially enjoyed Catherine O'Hara's performance -- I could hear people in the audience giggling around me at some of her lines. She is funny, and perfect in this role.If you want to see a subtle yet flooring and enjoyable movie -- check this out. Don't expect the usual sappy hollywood ending...thankfully this movie has a real ending. Parts of it are laugh out loud funny. I walked out of this movie and immediately said "I have to find this on DVD." I guarantee you'll want to see it again too.


Through quirky characters and intelligent Altman like set pieces, the film maker explores themes of destiny and fate in a sensitive and engrossing film. The ending makes us all reflect on our own life and on how the smallest actions can have the most dramatic impact on the way our things turns out.Despite the film starting at the end, the final outcome is completely unpredictable and questions the notion that our future is preordained.Ultimately this low key film tackles well worn themes with more impact than more publicised films such as Sliding Doors.


i caught this movie on HBO and i thought it was awesome. maybe it was because i had read a book with no plot, just showed peoples lives in NYC and how they connect, and it was an amazing book. i thought this movie was remarkable - maybe because i didn't need the sense of closure, seeing how everyone's lives ran together into the coffee shop shooting at the end was enough for me. i liked it.


I agree with a previous reviewer in saying that this film had good potential. And in some spots, it comes through on this promise. Unfortunately, when all is said and done, this film does feel a bit incomplete with some things left unexplained.On the plus side, I like how it shows that life can change very drastically with just one seemingly irrelevant incident or event. However, I felt that there were other ironies that were intended or even implied, but the film failed to get them across. If these ironies were explained, and all of the stories connected in more than just the beginning and the ending, this would have been a much better film and I believe it would have fulfilled its potential.I must say, despite its flaws, I liked it. But I could've liked it better...

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