Billy Crystal is alive and crackling as we speak, obviously, but there’s no denying he had a great run in the early ’90s. A five-year period from ’89 to ’93, specifically. When Harry Met Sally… (’89) kicked things off. The came the near-great. enormously well-liked City Slickers (’91), which opened right smack dab in the middle of Crystal’s four-year-run as the Oscar host (’90 to ’93), which cemented his top-of-the-worldness. (Crystal also Oscar-hosted in ’97, ’98, ’00, ’04 and ’12.)
Things slightly downshifted for Crystal over the next five or six years — City Slickers 2, Mr. Saturday Night, Forget Paris, Hamlet, Deconstructing Harry, Fathers’ Day, My Giant. But he rebounded big-time with Harold Ramis‘s Analyze This (’99). Then he directed ’61, which I re-watched recently and has aged very well. And then he delivered a beautiful eulogy for Muhammud Ali two years ago. And he’s got the book. But the early ’90s!
I’d honestly forgotten that 10-year-old Jake Gyllenhaal played Crystal’s son, Danny, in City Slickers.