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Monday, July 05, 2004

This is just one of those times...

That I like to point out the consistantly good work of the often overlooked. What is your favorite Nora Ephron film? For many it is Sleepless in Seattle and that is a wonderful film filled with the magic of Ephron's directing style. But who wrote the screenplay? (or at least part of it) David S. Ward. Writer of that "classic" film The Program. I know, I know... You're saying to yourself, "The Program? Is Christian serious?" Well, yes and no. Yes David Ward wrote The Program, no I don't think it is a classic. But I do think that Ward's work in general is of a very high caliber. Let's have a walk down memory lane:

The Sting 1973, Cannery Row 1982, The Sting II 1983, The Milagro Beanfield War 1988, Major League 1989, Down Periscope 1996. In fact, he wrote all three Major League films. Now not all of those are masterpieces, but I am fond of 1 and 3. Besides that, there is a consistancy to his work as well. I mentioned Ephron's directing style in Sleepless, but when I watch that film in succession with Major League, The Sting, and Down Periscope I heard a rhythm to the dialogue and noticed a pacing of narrative. All three shared a quality in the development of relationships and the way language was used. I am very fond of all three and it without looking at who the screenwriter (and sometimes director) was I never would have noticed. But that's the point, once I knew I started noticing little things in the stories like the similarities in Rene Russo's character in Sleepless with Meg Ryan's in Major League. Even the similar setup that both are engaged to guys they don't particularly like. Anyway, just thought that I would throw that out there. There are obviously many other great, and many better, directors/writers than David Ward, but his films have really entertained me.

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