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Probably one of the Greatest Chick Flicks Ever
I'd like to call this movie the story of my life. However, not there yet, so I can't.
Although it takes an anti-feminist view (two people not being able to be friends without succumbing to having sex) it's still very good, in the sense that the a lot of things were imperfect. The characters were imperfect, the setting, the events. It didn't make the movie a fantasy. It could happen in real life.
Better than I remembered
I haven't seen this in YEARS and actually I think I've only ever seen it once before. I remember being somewhat disappointed by it back then (probably because it had been hyped so much), so never sought it out. Now I got the chance to rewatch it, and fortunately it was a lot better than I remembered. I ended up really enjoying it :)
This just didn’t do it for me. It felt like every one of Meg Ryan’s paint-by-the-numbers rom-coms, combined with a message I really dislike about men and women failing to be just friends.
|Meg Ryan||Sally Albright|
|Billy Crystal||Harry Burns|
|Lisa Jane Persky||Alice|
|Michelle Nicastro||Amanda Reese|
|Harley Jane Kozak||Helen|
|Robert Alan Beuth||Man on Aisle|
|Jane Musky||Production Design|
|Barry Sonnenfeld||Director of Photography|
|George R. Nelson||Set Decoration|
|Marc Shaiman||Original Music Composer|
|Thomas Richard Sharp||Original Music Composer|
|Sabrina Wright||Set Decoration|
|Gloria Gresham||Costume Design|
|Mark A. Baker||Unit Production Manager|
"Can two friends sleep together and still love each other in the morning?"
"Can men and women be friends or does always sex get in the way?"
In 1977, Harry Burns (Crystal) and Sally Albright (Ryan) finish school at the University of Chicago and share the drive to New York City, where Sally is beginning journalism school and Harry is starting a career; at the time, Harry is dating a friend of Sally's, Amanda (Nicastro).
During the drive they discuss their differing ideas about relationships between men and women. Harry says that "Men and women can't be friends because the sex part always gets in the way". Sally disagrees, claiming that men and women can be strictly friends without sex. During a stop in a diner, Sally is angered when Harry tells her she is attractive; she accuses him of making a pass at her. In New York, due to their divergent philosophies, they part on unfriendly terms.
Five years later, they meet in a New York airport and find themselves on the same plane. Both are in relationships; Sally has just started dating a man named Joe (Ford) — who is an old friend of Harry's — and Harry is engaged to a woman named Helen, which surprises Sally. Harry suggests they become friends, forcing him to elaborate on his previous rule about male-female friendships; they can never be friends because the sex part gets in the way. Despite Harry's suggestions of exceptions to that rule, they separate concluding that they will not be friends.
Harry and Sally run into each other again five years later, in a New York bookstore. They have coffee and talk about their previous relationships, both of which have ended. After leaving the café, they take a walk and decide to be friends. In subsequent scenes, they have late-night phone conversations, go to dinner, and spend a lot of time together. Their dating experiences with others continue to highlight their different approaches to relationships and sex.
During a New Year's Eve party, Harry and Sally find themselves attracted to each other. Though they remain friends, they set each other up with their respective best friends, Marie (Fisher) and Jess (Kirby). The four go to a restaurant, where Marie and Jesse hit it off; they later get engaged. One night, Sally tearfully tells Harry over the phone that her ex, Joe, is getting married to his legal assistant, and he rushes to her apartment to comfort her. They unexpectedly have sex that night, resulting in an awkward moment the next morning as Harry quickly leaves in a state of distress. This creates tension in their relationship. Their friendship cools for three weeks until the two have a heated argument during Jesse and Marie's wedding dinner. Following this fight, Harry repeatedly attempts to mend his friendship with Sally.
Then, at a New Year's Eve party that year, Sally feels alone without Harry by her side. Meanwhile, Harry is shown spending New Year's alone. As she decides to leave the party early, Harry appears and declares his love for her; they make up and kiss.
Theatrical : 1989-07-21 : United States of America
DVD : 2001-01-09
DVD : 1998-10-13