The #1 Rule Of Rom-Com
When Harry and Sally first meet after recently graduating college, sharing a car to go from Chicago to New York, they annoy the living crap out of each other. This follows the standard rule seen in countless rom-coms: the hatred expressed between the two protagonists at the beginning of the movie is directly inverse to how hard they'll fall for each other later.
We'll Have What She's Having
If there was any doubt that women are frighteningly adept at faking orgasms, Sally's intense faux climax in the middle of New York's famed Katz's Deli lays those doubts to rest. Add the comment from an elderly woman at the next table ("I'll have what she's having") and you have the punchline to end all punchlines, delivered to perfection by the mother of director Rob Reiner, in one of filmdom's most indelible scenes.
Men And Women Actually CAN Be Friends...
The key facet of "When Harry Met Sally" that set it apart from other rom-coms was the movie's central theme, that a woman and a man can be best friends and maintain that relationship on a purely platonic basis. "I feel like I'm growing," Harry tells best pal Jess (Bruno Kirby) of having, for the first time ever, a friendship with a woman that doesn't involve sex. "I don't have to lie because I'm not always thinking about how to get her into bed," he explains. "I can just be myself."
...Or Can They?
After Harry's theory that women and men can't be platonic friends is disproven by his friendship with Sally, the movie pretty much refutes the point it just made by having the pair fall in love.
Never Take Someone You're Dating To The Airport
When Harry and Sally re-encounter each other on an airplane, he analyzes her then-relationship, correctly ascertaining it's a fairly new one. "You take someone to the airport, its clearly the beginning of the relationship," he tells her. "That's why I have never taken anyone to the airport at the beginning of a relationship. Because eventually things move on and you don't take someone to the airport and I never wanted anyone to say to me, 'How come you never take me to the airport anymore?'"
While that remark led Sally to dub Harry "the angel of death," you can't really argue with his logic...
New York Is Amazingly Beautiful In The Fall
While it's not a news flash, New York City really shines at certain times of the year, Christmas being one, autumn being another — and the latter really shone through in scenes in the movie with auburn-hued leaves on Central Park trees creating a stunning romantic backdrop.
He's Never Going To Leave His Wife
In a small-yet-memorable role as Sally's best friend Marie, Carrie Fisher plays a character dating a married man, hopelessly hoping he'll eventually leave his wife for her until realizing she's deluding herself. "I don't think he's ever going to leave her," Marie tells Sally, who responds, "Nobody thinks he's ever going to leave her."
This leads Marie to unleash her catchphrase: "You're right, you're right. I know you're right."
True Friends Will Always Be There For You
While "When Harry Met Sally" is a romantic comedy, it's also the story of the deep friendship that forms between the title characters, and this friendship is actually more important to the film than their subsequent romance. As friends, Harry and Sally are there for each other, any time of day or night, and will drop whatever they're doing to help the other through whatever crisis happens to unfold. Having friends like that is a rare and special thing.
If You Want It On The Side, Have It On The Side
As Harry sees it, Sally is the "worst kind" of woman. "You're high maintenance but you think you're low maintenance," which Sally just doesn't see.
"You don't see that? 'Waiter, I'll begin with a house salad, but I don't want the regular dressing. I'll have the balsamic vinegar and oil, but on the side. And then the salmon with the mustard sauce, but I want the mustard sauce on the side.' 'On the side' is a very big thing for you."
"Well," Sally responds, "I just want it the way I want it," which Harry characterizes as "high maintenance."
The lesson to be learned: If you want something a certain way, you should have it; just remember to tip your server a little extra for being such a pain in the butt.
When Revealing Your True Feelings, Don’t Hold Back
When telling that special someone how you really feel, why go halfway? Go all in — there's nothing left to lose. Case in point: Harry's iconic speech that wins Sally's heart: “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.”