I love writing dialogue and I suspect part of that affection comes from a life-long affair with movies.

As I struggle to wake up on this lazy, rainy Saturday, I thought I would share some of my favorites.

The Apartment (written and directed by Billy Wilder) is the type of movie which stands or falls on its dialogue. With Wilder at the helm, the movie never falters. There are a lot of great, quotable lines in The Apartment but the Robin Crusoe one is my favorite.

There’s something positively wonderful about two equally matched characters going head to head in conversation. The Goodbye Girl (written by Neil Simon and directed by Herbert Ross) is a movie I can happily watch daily for weeks on end and never quite get tired of it.

(Click “more” to see two other favorites.)


I first saw When Harry Met Sally (written by Nora Ephron, directed by Rob Reiner) when I was a preteen. I didn’t really get it. I watched it again when I was twenty and immediately fell in love. Of all the Ephron comedies, When Harry Met Sally has the most universal appeal. So many movies aim for that sort of appeal by dumbing down; When Harry Met Sally achieved it by being true to real life, by understanding the male/female dynamic and capturing it perfectly.

Clerks (written and directed) by Kevin Smith was the movie you had to sneak into the house and watch while your parents were out. It was crude and filled with profanity. It was the first movie to receive an NC-17 rating based on language. It also had some of the funniest, geekiest exchanges I had seen on film.

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