Remember when people actually liked Romantic Comedies? It's a dying, if not completely dead, genre. They just don't make movies like this anymore and that's a damn shame. To me, Sleepless in Seattle is the quintessential romantic comedy and here's why:
I don't really feel like I need to explain why having Tom Hanks in a romantic comedy is amazing, but I'm going to anyway. Tom is perfect. He's hilarious, handsome, interesting and a phenomenal actor. He's so damn charming and early 90's Tom Hanks is pure perfection.
I might be a little biased, because I was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, but Seattle is the perfect place to choose as a setting for a romantic comedy. Sleepless in Seattle makes use of Pike Place, and houseboats. Two things that you don't find in most other cities. Plus the constant rain makes for some really awesome moments. Rain is romantic when you're curled up with your cat and watching it pour from the comfort of your dry indoor couch. This movie is nice because it doesn't force you to stand in the rain and get wet. Name one other movie that also does that. Good luck finding one because Sleepless in Seattle is definitely the only film ever to not make its audience sit in the rain and watch it.
If you're not familiar with the storyline of Sleepless in Seattle, first I'm going to need you to reevaluate everything you've done with your life. What kind of life are you living that you haven't managed to sit down and watch 2 hours of the best film our generation has ever seen? Once you've done that you can continue reading.
Remember how the two protagonists don't even interact until the end of the movie? And Remember how Meg Ryan is trapped in an unfulfilling relationship with that guys who is allergic to everything and it's very annoying? Remember how Tom Hanks' wife died and he's been left alone on his houseboat to raise his son and he's just not ready to get back into the dating scene? OMG and remember how his son calls a late night radio station and says he wants his dad to be happy and find a new wife? And then suddenly Tom is thrown back into the dating world and all this attention is on him and Meg Ryan goes across the country to find him under the guise of "writing a news story" about him. It's magic.
Sleepless in Seattle helped me realize that all I ever want in my life is to fall in love with someone who I never have to see, speak to or interact with in general. The perfect relationship.
Did I mention that Tom Hanks is in this film? Because he is. And his performance is a revelation. I don't think he won an Oscar for this role, but he definitely should have. He managed to make falling in love seem fun, interesting and not scary. That's really impressive when you realize I'm the one saying it.
There's some cute kids in this movie. I like the kid who plays Tom Hanks' son, because he's very gung-ho about his dad falling in love with Meg Ryan. Him and his friend are little sneaks and buy themselves plane tickets to New York so they can force Tom to meet Meg on top of the Empire State Building. They essentially hack the airlines ticket system to do this and it's very impressive. Also very effective because guess what, Tom and Meg fall in love on Top of the Empire State Building.
I've never been to the top of the Empire State Building, but I don't think you'll see people falling in love up there now. You'll probably just see a homeless man urinating. My vote is that we find that homeless guy a woman to fall in love with and we make that the next big rom-com. We can call it Homeless in the Big Apple. You heard that pitch here first, I'm ready to talk release dates whenever.
Besides the ultimate star power that Tom Hanks brings to the film, (which if we're being honest is the only celebrity who ever matters) Rosie O'Donnel and that guy from Frasier are both in the movie as well! This was also before the world shunned Rosie as an entertainer and back when people remembered the name of that guy from Frasier, you know who I'm talking about right?
This is worth repeating. One of the best things about Tom Hanks is inherent like-ability. I just feel like he would never hurt me, you know? I also have a theory that he lives in a modest sized home and drives a Honda Accord, which is a mid sized sedan, because he doesn't need to be flashy he just wants a car that can get him from Point A to Point B and also provide him with comfort and reliable gas mileage. None of that is in the movie though, that's just pure speculation on my part. I'm open to discussing this more in depth.
This movie accurately fits into the genre of romantic comedy. It's genuinely funny to everyone, not just women. This is the kind of movie you can watch with anyone and they'll enjoy it. It's not full of gender specific humor or cheap jokes. It seems to be aware of the difficult category it's been placed in, and the writers make the story likeable and interesting. Did you know Norah Ephron was nominated for an Oscar for the screenplay? Damn right she was. And most of the movie holds up, even though there are some specific references to old films that many people haven't currently watched. I'm totally fine watching this movie over and over again.
I don't think that's a word, but it's accurate and meaningful in this context. I have watched Sleepless in Seattle hundreds of times. It's a masterpiece. It's comforting. It's hilarious and it gives me hope. It's everything you ever need in a movie. Plus Tom Hanks is in it. You guys know that right?
Just trust me on this.