Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Do Your Remembering Nora Ephron's 5 Most Memorable Movie Moments

When Harry Met Sally (1989)
More than 20 years after its release, When Harry Met Sally is still the benchmarks for romantic comedies. All of Ephron's trademarks are there – witty repartee, innocent sexual tension, lighthearted conflict – and so is the most popular (and most parodied) line of her career: "I'll have what she's having." Meg Ryan's over-the-top diner scene alone will go down in the annals of cinema history.

Sleepless in Seattle (1993)
Is there a more romantic movie out there than Sleepless in Seattle? Seriously, show it to us. Because we've been smitten with this classic romantic comedy since it hit theaters in 1993. From Tom Hanks' first radio call to the iconic Empire State Building meet-up, every second of Sleepless in Seattle is pure romantic bliss & we have writer/director Ephron to thank for that. They really don't make 'em like they used to.

Julie & Julia (2009)
Meryl Streep's spot on imitation of Julia Child nabbed all the headlines, but it was Nora Ephron's sweet script that tugged at our heartstrings and made us see the iconic cook in a new light: as a passionate woman who was deeply in love with her husband and with food (in that order). "Julia, you are the butter to my bread and the breath to my life," Stanley Tucci's character confesses during a memorable dinner party scene. Be still our (oversized paper) hearts.

You've Got Mail (1998)
You've Got Mail, a digital age remake of The Shop Around the Corner, wins major points for reuniting Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks as a pair of rival book shop owners who fall in love online. Sure, it's a little silly sometimes, but we'd be lying if we said that they cheesy romance of the final scene ("I wanted it to be you. I wanted it to be you so badly.") didn't leave us a little misty-eyed every time.

Silkwood (1983)
Ephron was already a successful writer for magazines like New York and Esquire when she wrote Silkwood, a heavy drama that won her an Oscar nod her first time out. Based on the life of Karen Silkwood, the 1983 movie tells the story of a woman who fights against the nuclear refinement facility where she works, and where she's been repeatedly exposed to dangerous levels of radiation. Meryl Streep, who plays Silkwood, sings "Amazing Grace" over the final minute of the film, which is famously haunting. As she drives down a dark highway on her way to meet a reporter to expose misdeeds at the refinery, a pair of headlights get closer and closer until the scene fades into the fatal aftermath of her single car accident. Though she will likely be best remembered for her deft romantic comedies, Silkwood proved that the gifted writer could handle drama with the best of them.

Celebrated screenwriter and director Nora Ephron passed away on Tuesday at the age of 71 due to complications with myelodysplasia, a blood disorder she was diagnosed with six years ago. Ephron is best known for writing the screenplay for the romantic comedy classic, When Harry Met Sally, and for writing and directing beloved movies like Sleepless in Seattle, You've Got Mail, and Julie & Julia.

In celebration of Ephron's life and work, we've rounded up the five most memorable moments from her films. From fake orgasms to Empire State Building kisses to Meryl Steep's Oscar-nominated portrayal of Julia Child, Ephron made her mark on Hollywood and created some of our favorite movies in the process.

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