New York has always had one or two people in each generation whose wit and talent shine out so powerfully that what they say and write comes to personify the times in which they lived. So it was with Dorothy Parker in 30′s to the 50′s, Truman Capote in the 50′s to the 70′s and Nora Ephron from the 80′s through into the new millenium.
To catch the sheer pleasure of being in Nora Ephron’s company watch the video and enjoy the very funny and finely crafted tribute she once gave to her good friend Meryl Streep.
Ephron was one of those multi talented New Yorkers who once she had put her pen to paper couldn’t stop writing. Or once she had experienced the power of crafting a drama couldn’t stop creating marvellous dramas on film and stage for us all to watch and enjoy.
She was prepared to put it all out there. After her marriage to Carl Bernstein of Watergate fame broke down, she penned a heartfelt take-down about her faithless spouse thinly disguised as a ‘novel’ and then topped that by turning it into a marvellously entertaining film as well. Bernstein threatened to sue but somehow never did.
The films she wrote and also sometimes also directed and produced were mostly raging successes. Some had a message like Silkwood. But she turned a humble New York deli. Katz’s, into a world wide sensation when she had the famed ‘fake orgasm’ scene filmed there. And in the process she created one of the greatest iconic movie moments ever shot in New York.
Her films Sleepless in Seattle and You’ve Got Mail turned Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan into major movie stars. Her rom coms always had an edge and depth that made them not just good watching but also touching and very believable.
Now her son jacob Bernstein has directed a film about his Mom which will be show at the New York film Festival at Lincoln Center on September 29 and October 3 and will then be on HBO.
Ephron famously concealed her last fatal illness from her friends and the reason why she did this are explored in the film. The film celebrates not just her wit, her passions and her great talent but also her capacity for enduring friendships. Meanwhile Ephron, like Parker and Capote takes her place in history as a quintessential, clever and funny New Yorker in everything she did and wrote.