Recently widowed Tom Hanks makes an emotional appeal on a phone-in radio show and America’s women fall in love with him, including journalist Meg Ryan.

However, she lives 3,000 miles away and is engaged to Bill Pullman…

Writer-director Nora Ephron’s sharply observed script is both funny and truthful and she keeps her stars tantalisingly apart for most of the film.

Ryan positively glows as the hopelessly romantic Annie, who watches too many old films and who really wants ‘to be in love in a movie’, Hanks is an irresistible mix of vulnerability and humour and Ross Malinger (as his young son) is a real little charmer.

There are many incidental pleasures, too, including Rob Reiner’s dating advice to an out-of-practice Hanks and Rita Wilson’s tearful description of the plot of the 1957 weepie An Affair to Remember.

Hilariously funny and unashamedly slushy, this is exactly what a really good romantic comedy should be.