My Dinner with Andre vs. When Harry Met Sally
How did this movie get funded?
There is no logline I know that would convince someone to finance this project. Two men sit in a corner booth and have a conversation and for the most part it's one sided
. Nope, not a dime of support. Someone must have called in all their favors and got someone to read the whole script, because this conversation is like no other I've heard. Pull up a chair and don't make any plans to go anywhere else. All the action takes place right here, through the courses of an evening, but don't worry, the staff will need to remind you
of the time, because it will fly by.The Patrons
That voice! That face! That funny little lisp (saying little lisp, gives me a lisp). Andre Gregory made a comment, something along the lines of, Wallace's face is always in flux, constantly reacting and thinking, never static, never the same. It's true. I love watching him listen to Andre, as he tries to take it all in, even when what he's hearing goes against everything he knows and understands. Great acting going on and I'd say, even more so from Andre. The amount of dialogue is enough to choke a person, but he is able to tell his tales as if they are just coming into his head, while he's relaying them. My favorite moment of his is when he's telling a particularly harrowing experience and his voice gets agitated, his breathing becomes labored and his face is framed in fear. Bravo. The Main Course
Is quail even worth the work it takes to get through it? All those little pieces need maneuvering around and if you're hungry, the meat can't be consumed quickly at all. Patience. Trust the chef. I hear the meat has a sweet nutty flavor. The whole purpose of this meal is to remove yourself out of your routine and wake you up to new tastes and textures. Wallace Shawn struggles with this some, but he's attentive and asks good questions. And even though he's skeptical of that sweet nutty flavor, it grows on him and he won't look at life's details the same way again.
I was in Katz's Delicatessen a few years ago and it was crowded and noisy and I loved it! People were jockeying for position, looking to be seen and heard and workers were handling all kinds of orders and keeping everything under controlled chaos. They knew the routine and led the diners through it. When Harry Met Sally
? Same exact thing. The story takes place over a dozen years and through different relationships, while seemingly meandering through it all, but Nora Ephron and Rob Reiner know the routine. Just follow them and they'll get you through.The Patrons
After watching the movie, I remember saying, "I forgot how funny Billy Crystal is." And that makes all the difference. As caustic and cynical as he comes across, his humor erases the memory of it right and left. How can you stay mad at someone who makes you laugh? And, I may be in the minority, but Meg Ryan makes me happy. Watching her evolve throughout the movie, but keeping her quirks, feels so relatable. These two people are such opposite forces to begin with and then by the end, not so much.
That's good work, in my book.The Main Course
As I type the word delicatessen, I see delicate
, which means to eat, in German. That is so not true! There is no delicate eating going on here. The food is messy and challenging. Try getting your mouth/mind around all that is served up. Impossible. There is no way of making it through this meal without getting it all over you and it's awkward having such attention being placed on yourself as you try and attend to it. Too close for comfort? You bet. People are messy. Life is messy, but it's so worth it.
Both are excellent choices. Both come highly recommended. Which movie would I consume again and later, again? When Harry Met Sally
. It get's my vote. bon appétit!