You want to be in love in a movie!”
That quote is from “Sleepless in Seattle”
The truth is, however, we all really want to be in love in a Nora Ephron movie.
Ms. Ephron passed away earlier this evening at the still young age of 71. Complications of a blood disorder I cannot pronounce.
After the shock wore off, I selfishly wondered to myself if there were a couple of secret screenplays that she had stockpiled away, that had yet to make it to the public. Scripts that she had been waiting for just the right moment/actors to bring to life.
Part of me hopes there is, while part of me frets that whoever produces/directs them won’t do them justice.
See, Nora was a one woman show; writing, producing, and directing her masterpieces. Those much maligned by some, but cherished by most, “chick flicks”. Those movies that no matter what part they are at when you casually flip by them on the tv, you immediately stop what you’re doing to watch.
The ones you can quote at will and recite the dialogue right along with the actors because you’ve seen them that many times.
“When Harry Met Sally” is that movie for me. Heck I still have it and watch it… on VHS! It’s my rainy afternoon movie. My cheer me up cause my heart is broken movie. My “I still believe there’s hope” movie. And every year, along with the drive by’s, there is a scheduled viewing of it sometime between Christmas and New Years. I’ve seen it at least a 100 times in part or in whole, and yet I laugh at all the same places, and cry at all the same places, and say “Pe-CAN Pie” out loud along with Bill Crystal… every time. And it all leads to Harry running across New York city on New Year’s Eve, and up that massive stairwell into the party where he meets up with Sally, who acts like she’s mad but you know she’s secretly ecstatic inside, but she pushes him away anyway, and he proclaims this:
I love that you get cold when it’s 71 degrees out. I love that it takes you an hour and a half to order a sandwich. I love that you get a little crinkle above your nose when you’re looking at me like I’m nuts. I love that after I spend the day with you, I can still smell your perfume on my clothes. And I love that you are the last person I want to talk to before I go to sleep at night. And it’s not because I’m lonely, and it’s not because it’s New Year’s Eve. I came here tonight because when you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.”
And then she says something like “you make it so hard to hate you, and I really hate you Harry” … and then they kiss. *sigh*
The last movie she made was “Julie and Julia”. That movie had such a profound effect on me (I’m pretty sure I wrote about it here somewhere) I took myself to see it on my birthday, and when it was over, I marched immediately across the street to the bookstore to purchase Julia Child’s Cookbook (which of course was backordered due to the popularity of the movie) so I purchased a smaller “Highlights of Julia Childs” cookbook, then headed to William Sonoma to purchase my first, real, All-Clad pan. (a french skillet of course) In much the same way her other movies unlocked my inner romantic, this movie unlocked my inner chef, and pure joy of cooking and eating. It was only after that movie that I discovered that on top of being the voice of my generation’s legions of strong but hopeless romantic women, she was also a foodie!
Reporter: Foie gras: Yes or no?
Ephron: Yes! Are you kidding?
I couldn’t have loved her more at that point. A brilliant essayist, screenwriter, director who also believed in little indulgences and the pleasures of food.
“Everybody dies, there’s no avoiding it and I do not believe for one second that butter is the cause of anyone’s death. Overeating may be, but not butter, please. I just feel bad for people who make that mistake. By the way the same thing is true of olive oil. What difference could it possibly make if there’s a little olive oil in your salad dressing? It does not take one day off your life.” – Nora Ephron
dear, sweet, witty, sarcastic, talented, Nora… I hope your final days were filled with butter, and olive oil, and multiple desserts, and your famous vinaigrette, and bowls of comforting mashed potatoes.
And movie love.
Big, hokey, funny, quirky, schmaltzy, “chick flick”, Nora Ephron, movie love.