After watching You’ve Got Mail a couple of weeks ago, I was itching to go back to the original Hanks-Ryan movie Sleepless in Seattle. If you haven’t yet seen this, you may have lived on another planet, or rom-coms really aren’t your thing. If they are, rent this NOW.
Jonah Baldwin (Ross Malinger), an eight-year old recently relocated to Seattle after his mother’s death, calls in to a radio show on Christmas Eve to tell the host that his Christmas wish would be for his father Sam (Tom Hanks) to get a new wife so he wouldn’t have to be alone and sad. In her car, journalist Annie Reed (Meg Ryan) happens to listen to the broadcast and feels an incredible connection when she hears Sam talk about his relationship with his deceased wife. Sam’s presence on the show creates a huge movement of sympathy as he’s flooded with letters from women wanting to meet him. Even Annie is secretly researching him, while trying to pretend that everything is fine with her fiancé Walter (Bill Pullman).
This movie was (and remains!) one of the gems that emerged in the late 80s and early 90s, along with When Harry Met Sally, While You Were Sleeping and Pretty Woman. It’s especially powerful as the main characters share very little screen time together, yet still manage to pull off incredible chemistry.
The story also focuses largely on another movie, An Affair To Remember, which Annie and her best friend watch repeatedly and which provides the story arch for some of the movie.
Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan are here reunited for the second time after their unknown first film Joe Vs The Volcano and react so well to each other that they were cast together for You’ve Got Mail almost ten years later. Bill Pullman unfortunately plays a terrible character as he’s mostly unlikeable compared to Hanks, a fact hard to believe if you’ve seen While You Were Sleeping in which he’s HOT.
For some trivia, the movie poster was inspired by that of An Affair To Remember, a chocolate box showing a couple about to kiss is in fact Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan’s profiles and Rita Wilson, Hanks’ second wife, plays his sister. The two had already been married for 5 years when the movie was made.
Pictures from: popscrenn.com, timeinc.net, moviefarm.com, bp.blogpsot.com, wikimedia.org