By Gary Murray
Starring Rachel McAdams, Harrison Ford, Diane Keaton and Patrick Wilson
Written by Aline Brosh McKenna
Directed by Roger Michell
Running time 1 hr 42 min
MPAA Rating PG-13
Selig Film Rating Matinee
Rachel McAdams is slowly becoming the 'girl next door' actress. She's the girl every guy wants to date and the girl other girls are not threaten by. Most of her roles have been light and fun without taking too many chances. In her newest venture Morning Glory she give the audience much more of the same.
The story starts with Becky (Rachel McAdams) as a young woman working at a local AM Morning Show in New Jersey. She's one of these go-getters who has a do anything to make it. Unfortunately, she is let go from her local gig. After a sobering non-pep talk from Mom, she takes on the hard-core search for a job. After much rejections, she gets an interview with IBS, a NYC network with a weak fourth place morning show. Even though it is less pay and more expenses, she takes the job offered to her by Jerry (Jeff Goldblum).
Soon she is over her head, the little girl in the big city. Almost instantly she makes friends with Adam (Patrick Wilson) a hot shot doing network news magazine programs. They have all the prestige and the morning show gets all the gruff. In the world of the morning show, Becky finds that making the national scoop is much harder than local one. The last place network show seems to lad behind on getting all the important guests.
Becky soon jumps in by taking charge of just about every aspect of the production, becoming a 24-7 devotion. When she fires the male anchor, she has to scramble to get a replacement. Working at the network is veteran news man Mike Pomeroy (Harrison Ford). He is a seasoned journalist with a ton of awards and a giant destain for morning fluff. Adam calls him 'the 3rd worst person in the world'. But, due to his contract, he has to take the job. He doesn't mix along with his veteran co-host Colleen Peck (Diane Keaton) but she is a trouper, wanting to do anything and everything.
With two anchors who don't mix and a weak support staff, Becky soon finds that if she cannot get better ratings the show will be canceled. Going for broke, she tries every crazy scheme to build ratings. Even though it takes a long time to get to this point, the scenes where the show goes into overdrive are some of the funniest moments of 2010. Every person knows where all this will end but it is a fun ride getting there.
Rachel McAdams could read the phone book and still be captivating. She is the newest entry in the 'American's Sweetheart' contest and is winning by lengths. Here she just adds to the base of her fans, giving a winning performance that is as goofy as charming.
The supporting cast really makes the film zing. Harrison Ford plays the stoic, bitter newsman with a certain gleeful relish. He smirks and snarls every line with a zeal that can only come from a lifetime of acting. Diane Keaton just shines in a smaller role, giving a winning smile while delivering viper lines.
The weakest link in the story comes from Patrick Wilson. Here he is just beef-cake, something for the ladies to aspire to. There is nothing much to the role more of a goal than a performance.
If a category needs to be made for Morning Glory, it would be a lighter update of Broadcast News. The two films, while having a different sensibility travel a similar path. Where Broadcast News was a love triangle set in the cut-throat world of network news, Morning Glory takes a path of lighter fair stories. That is where the bulk of the comedy generated, the funhouse mirror reflecting back on itself. Morning Glory is nothing more than an entertaining little bon-bon. It is something that is just fun to watch.