Some days I watch familiar old movies instead of trying new ones. Why experiment with new movies, the thinking goes, which may or may not entertain, when you know for sure that you will enjoy a certain old movie? One such set of movies, that I find comfort in, is the triad from Nora Ephron: When Harry Met Sally…, Sleepless In Seattle and You’ve Got Mail.
Sleepless in Seattle brings together my favorite on-screen pair: Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan. Sam (Tom Hanks) and his precocious son move to Seattle in a bid to overcome the grief of the demise of Sam’s wife. When his son puts him on a radio call-in show, Sam shares his sorrow with the listeners and is named Sleepless in Seattle. Single women all over the nation are attracted by him and propose to him by (snail-) mail. One of the mailers is Annie (Meg Ryan), who seems to be in a perfect engagement, but thinks that it is missing some magic. Sam’s son wishes Sam would meet Annie, but he is not interested in any of the mailers. How Sam and Annie finally meet forms the story.
Sleepless in Seattle felt extremely cheesy the first time, but has gotten better every time I watch it again. Yes, so these two people are destined to meet, and once you get over it the movie is a real treat. Nora Ephron is not averse to parodying her own genre. One example is the funny scene where Sam’s sister gets teary-eyed about the romance in An Affair To Remember, while the men rollick in her misery. The movie is full of little puns, and the more you watch it, the more you notice them all over the place. Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan are perfect in the movie, though the plot gives them very little time together, since they are meant to meet only at the end. Sleepless in Seattle continues to be a movie that I can always turn to when in need of comfort.