When Harry Met Sally... (1989)
Review Date: April 11, 1999
Director: Rob Reiner
Writer: Nora Ephron
Producers: Rob Reiner, Andrew Sheinman
After College, two strangers named Harry and Sally drive from Chicago to New York together and garner very little interest in each another. Five years later, they meet again in an airport, with even less sparks flying this time around. It isn't until another five years goes by, that Harry, now divorced, and Sally, just getting off a five-year relationship, become friends, and ultimately...much better friends.
This film is the ultimate romantic comedy for all those people who don't think that they will ever find anyone that is right for them. It isn't based on the notion of the proverbial "love at first sight", but rather about the more typical love that grows between two people who spend a lot of time together, support one another through thick and thin, depend on each other as best friends, and ultimately care more about each other than anyone else in the world. Reminiscent of Woody Allen's ANNIE HALL (9/10), this is the movie that sent Meg Ryan into cute, romantic, comedy movie star heaven, and confirmed Billy Crystal as a viable romantic lead. The script is an excellent breakdown of timeless conversations between the sexes ("Can men and women ever be friends without sex getting in the way?" and "Will a one-night stand with your best friend ultimately ruin your friendship?"), witty repartee between the two leads, and a beautifully constructed love story that is carefully assembled over time, and gently eases you into the wonder of that thing called love.
This movie also offers one of the most romantic soundtracks that you'd ever want to hear via a career-launching effort by Harry Connick Jr., an endless array of picturesque scenes featuring the wonderful world of New York Christmas at its best, quotable dialogue galore, and solid supporting performances from Bruno Kirby and Princess-Leia-for-life, Carrie Fisher. The only complaint that I have about this movie is that it is only ninety minutes long. Other than that, it delivers a timeless tale of a charming couple falling in love, intercut with various couples relating their own accounts of l'amour de leur vie, with humor laced through every scene, and a tangible sense of hope for all those who still believe in great friends, fate and love.
(c) 2017 Berge Garabedian