Review: ‘Sleepless in Seattle’

Having achieved her greatest success writing When Harry Met Sally . . . , director-cowriter Nora Ephron tries a slightly new riff on that theme in this shamelessly romantic comedy [from a screen story by Jeff Arch]. Pic delivers ample warmth and some explosively funny moments.

Having achieved her greatest success writing When Harry Met Sally . . . , director-cowriter Nora Ephron tries a slightly new riff on that theme in this shamelessly romantic comedy [from a screen story by Jeff Arch]. Pic delivers ample warmth and some explosively funny moments.

Sam (Tom Hanks) is still grieving over the death of his wife (Carey Lowell, seen in flashback) when his son Jonah (Ross Malinger) phones a latenight radio call-in show saying he thinks the solution is for dad to remarry. Sam reluctantly gets on the line and ends up spilling his guts.

Among those listening is Annie (Meg Ryan), a just-engaged newspaper reporter whose husband-to-be, Walter (Bill Pullman), is sensible but not very exciting. She finds herself increasingly obsessed with ‘Sleepless in Seattle,’ Sam’s on-air handle.

For all the enjoyable flourishes, and there are many, Ephron keeps pausing to remind us that this is a movie, making it hard for anyone to really get lost in the story. And since the big question isn’t ‘if’, but ‘when’ and ‘how’, the film loses considerable momentum about two-thirds through before rallying for a heart-tugging finale.

Hanks certainly figures to increase his stock as a well-rounded actor and not just a comic, while Ryan essentially plays the same character as Sally, with pleasing if predictable results.

1993: Nominations: Best Original Screenplay, Song (‘A Wink and a Smile’)

Sleepless in Seattle

Production

Tri-Star. Director Nora Ephron; Producer Gary Foster; Screenplay Nora Ephron, David S. Ward, Jeff Arch; Camera Sven Nykvist; Editor Robert Reitano; Music Marc Shaiman; Art Director Jeffrey Townsend

Crew

(Color) Extract of a review from 1993. Running time: 104 MIN.

With

Tom Hanks Meg Ryan Bill Pullman Ross Malinger Rosie O'Donnell Gaby Hoffmann
Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Film News from Variety

Loading