I love the interstitial scenes with the old couples telling how they met.
Woman: Well, he was the head counsellor and the boys’ camp and I was the head counsellor at the girls’ camp, and they had a social one night, and he walked across the room. I thought he was coming to talk to my friend Maxine, ‘cos people were always crossing rooms to talk to Maxine. But he was coming to talk to me, and he said…
Man: I’m Ben Small of the Coney Island Smalls.
Woman: At that moment I knew. I knew the way you know about a good melon.
I love Harry and Sally’s self absorbed friends, Jess and Marie.
Marie: If we had an extra room you could put all of your things including your bar stools.
Jess: No, honey, wait, wait, wait, honey, honey, wait, wait, wait… you don’t like my bar stools? (To Harry) Harry, come on, someone has to be on my side.
Marie: I’m on your side, I’m just trying to help you have good taste.
Jess: I have good taste!
Marie: Everybody thinks they have good taste and a sense of humour but they couldn’t possibly all have good taste.
I love Harry and Sally’s frustrating yet affectionate friendship. I love Sally’s neuroses and Harry talking her down when she goes off on a rant.
Sally: He just met her… She’s supposed to be his transitional person, she’s not supposed to be the ONE. All this time I thought he didn’t want to get married. But, the truth is, he didn’t want to marry me. He didn’t love me.
Harry: If you could take him back now, would you?
Sally: No. But why didn’t he want to marry me? What’s the matter with me?
Sally: I’m difficult.
Harry: You’re challenging.
Sally: I’m too structured, I’m completely closed off.
Harry: But in a good way.
Sally: No, no, no, I drove him away. AND, I’m gonna be forty.
Harry: In eight years.
Sally: But it’s there. It’s just sitting there, like some big dead end. And it’s not the same for men. Charlie Chaplin had kids when he was 73.
Harry: Yeah, but he was too old to pick them up.
After this banter they sleep together and it messes things up for a while (because “men and women can never be friends cos the sex part always gets in the way”). But of course it all works out well in the end.
Harry: 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.
Ah, that’s some good writing.