Ah, did that movie make me feel good. The story is narrated by a bunch of friends around a table who are celebrating the upcoming wedding of one of them. The groom starts telling his wife about the romance between Mickey and Ellen, who aren’t there yet. For the next 100 minutes or so, we’ll relive their relationship, with his ups and downs. The film was co-written and directed by its star, the hyper talented Billy Crystal, who also played in my favorite romantic comedy back in 1989, “When Harry Met Sally”, so this new flick has indeed some similarities.
This time, Crystal plays a NBA ref, but it’s still Harry. If we have more of his witty cynicism, we don’t quite have the bright cuteness of Meg “Sally” Ryan, but it’s not that bad because Debra Winger is also charming in her own way. Mickey and Ellen meet in unusual circumstances in Paris, where they spend a wonderful week before parting. Shades of “Casablanca”? Yeah, but it ain’t surprising since Bogie and Hepburn are probably the most memorable couple ever seen on screen. After a while apart, Ellen returns to America and Mickey marries her. The rollercoaster now begins. He’s happy , she’s not. She’s happy, he’s not. They fight, they struggle to be happy… Well, you know the drill, but Crystal is a promising director and the film is surprisingly fresh, inventive and funny.