Movie Review by Debbie Winkler
Starring: Tom Hanks, Meg Ryan, Bill Pullman, Ross Malinger, David Hyde Pierce
Director: Nora Ephron
Release Date: 25 June 1993
Length: 105 minutes
Movie Rating: PG
View Format: DVD
My Rating: 4/5 stars
“Fate and a tenacious 8-year-old boy conspire to unite lovelorn widower Sam Baldwin (Tom Hanks) and unhappily engaged Annie Reed (Meg Ryan) in Nora Ephron‘s Oscar-nominated romantic comedy, inspired by the 1957 classic An Affair To Remember. When Annie hears Sam and his young son, Jonah (Ross Malinger), on a call-in radio show, she thinks she’s found her soul mate. Jonah knows Annie is the one, but convincing his dad could take a little work.” — Netflix.com
You know, I haven’t seen this movie in over a decade. It has been so long that the only thing I could remember is the ending. I don’t typically enjoy romantic comedies and I very rarely, if ever, pick these movies to watch on my own without friends or family kind of forcing me into it. Believe it or not, my 26-year-old brother picked it out as it was a movie he hadn’t seen before. His wife refused to watch it with us because she doesn’t like Meg Ryan, but I didn’t want to make him feel bad for picking the movie so we ended up watching it. I was really surprised by how much I enjoyed seeing it again. I did not remember how funny this movie is! There are so many wonderful one-liners, many delivered so subtly that, if you are not paying attention, you completely miss out! I laughed my way through the whole movie and had a wonderful time. I am happy to say that my father was the only one who got teary-eyed at the end of the movie so this is not just a chick flick.
The music is absolutely marvelous in the film. Everything is well performed and is chosen so carefully and appropriately for the scenes that the music really augmented the film and elevated it to something special. Tom Hanks is outstanding and reminded me all over again of what a wonderful actor he is. No wonder women all over the world were falling in love with him after this film! The screenwriters really outdid themselves when they wrote the scenes where Sam was sharing details about his relationship with his deceased wife. Your heart just melts and you hope that you will find someone who will refer to you like that someday. Meg Ryan is quite wonderful in her role. Is it weird to say that I forgot how beautiful she is? She has a beautiful face, lovely hair and a gorgeous smile – now if someone could just dress her better! I know that she doesn’t like starring in romantic comedies, but she really brings an extra-special something to the genre and makes movies like this one better than they are. The little boy (Ross Malinger) is adorable and funny as Tom Hanks’ son, Rosie O’Donnell is hysterically acerbic as Meg Ryan’s boss, Bill Pullman is a hoot as the hypochondriac fiance and the supporting cast, particularly Meg Ryan‘s family at the beginning, will make you laugh out loud!
Bottom line is, this movie is considered a classic for a reason. I know that many think it overly sappy and sweet and so on, but I really like it. The only problem is that it raised expectations for women around the world. Everyone is waiting for that man who knows she is the one by just the touch of a hand. I know, I know, yet another movie that destroys all hopes of a normal guy getting the girl. I would recommend that you watch it anyway!
This movie contains some mild language, some off-color jokes and a few sequences referring to sex and intimacy. There are scenes of drinking, depression, mourning, awkward first dates, good and bad relationships and improbable romances springing up between people who live a continent way from each other. Recommended for ages 12 and up.