Geeks will enjoy the movie because it deals with one of the great geek fantasies finding true love on the Internet. The movie is worth seeing as romantic mushy entertainment (guys, that means its a great first date movie no nudity mushy warm feelings).
The movie does not go into how the two met on the Internet. We are simply told that Meg Ryan (Cathleen Kelly) went to an "over thirties" chat room using the handle Shopgirl and met NY152. They start exchanging emails but forbade exchanging personal details.
The movie explores their incompatibilities. Meg Ryan plays a sweet, naïve, love-everybody, owner of a childrens bookstore that she inherited from her mother. Tom Hanks plays Joe Fox, a heartless, third generation, keep-up-with-the-times, its-not-personal-just-business, Superstore book mogul. Joe Fox gloats with his father and grandfather when they crush and destroy neighborhoody independent bookstore owners like Meg Ryan.
The movie does not explore their geeky incompatibilities. She is Apple and he is PC. This difference may not have been insurmountable because they were not serious geeks. They both had AOL as a server (nuff said).
Their love must overcome two hurdles. First, they must both dump their current and apparently totally compatible love interests. (She is involved with a sappy, uses-a-typewriter, where-is-technology-taking-us, columnist. He lives with the Jezebel daughter of another bookstore mogul).
Second, he must get her to see past his off-line persona as the guy who destroyed her business and to see the on-line soul mate. (Tom Hanks peeks before entering a restaurant for a meeting between NY152 and Shopgirl, and discovers that Shopgirl is his latest Superstore kill.
The movie touches on the great obstacles to on-line love. First, people on the net can be perfectly open and honest, or wholly deceitful and manipulative, which are you? Second, will a happy on-line relationship become a happy off-line relationship? If you like romantic comedies, the movie is worth the price of admission.
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