So apparently what Captain America really wants to do is direct. Sadly, his directorial debut is less than marvelous (*groan*). To be fair, I don’t think Chris Evans’ direction is actually the problem with Before We Go, starring Evans and Alice Eve (Star Trek Into Darkness, Starter for 10). The main problem is the clichéd dialogue, which just doesn’t sound like two strangers slowly, haltingly getting to know and fall for each other over a limited period of time. For a stellar example of that, watch the much sexier Cairo Time or Before Sunrise.
Before We Go follows a tired, by-the-book script of how two beautiful strangers, Nick and Brooke, should interact with each other – initial wariness, antagonism that masks attraction, conflict based on how each really “knows” the other, and finally, acknowledgement of their mutual attraction. It even has the moment in which Nick and Brooke momentarily pretend to be together to ward off some troublemakers on the street – establishing their chemistry in a wholly unoriginal way.
New York City serves as the picturesque yet lived-in backdrop for Nick and Brooke’s night on the town, but not much of their interaction feels genuine or earned. Evans has an easygoing charm and light touch that help with the clunky dialogue, but Eve seems stiff and uncomfortable. I can’t really blame her when her character, impulsively suggesting that they go see a psychic, says things like, “You know my past, now I want to find out my future.” The movie tries to create suspense about Nick and Brooke’s backstories, but none of it feels surprising or worth the pay-off. I can’t really think of anything else to say about this movie, which makes me sad for Chris Evans. He makes some interesting non-Marvel film choices (see the exhilarating, whacked-out Snowpiercer), but this movie is generic and forgettable.