"You've Got Mail" re-teams actors Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan with the director of their 1993 hit "Sleepless in Seattle". Once again Nora Ephron has cast the duo and star-crossed lovers, destined to end up in each others arms, but only after overcoming adversity. Thankfully, the new film tones down the saccharine romance of its predecessor.
The financial well-being of the children's' bookstore run by Kathleen Kelly (Ryan) is threatened by the appearance of a successful discount book superstore on the scene. Joe Fox (Hanks) is responsible for the unfortunate situation, but is unwilling to change his tactics when it comes to matters of business. While professionally they are at odds, the pair maintain a burgeoning internet romance, unaware of the identity of their online soul mate. The truth has to come out sooner or later.
Hanks' and Ryan's chemistry together is undeniable, if a little on the tame side. The story that they are placed in is wholly predictable and occasionally improbable, but their easy interplay makes the film enjoyable. It certainly has more substance than the fluffy "Sleepless in Seattle", but shares that film's lack of imagination and permeating blandness. A mixed bag, to be sure.