Morning Glory (2010)
The adorable version of Broadcast News.
Morning Glory is about a workaholic executive producer for a small-town morning news show who gets canned one minute and then hired the next at a once-prominent but currently failing station in The Big Apple. Luckily, this gal’s got just the right amount of spunk and complete disregard for sleeping or developing a semblance of a social life to turn this joint around, but thanks to a curmudgeon anchor and a boss who continues to emphasize the fact that she’s going to fail, our girl’s nonetheless got her work cut out for her.
So it’s written by the woman responsible for such testosterone-fueled bloodbaths as The Devil Wears Prada and 27 Dresses, directed by the guy behind Notting Hill (even though his resume does seem to indicate that he branches out every now and again), and you can probably already see where I’m going with this. Yeah, it’s a chick flick, but for a chick flick about a lifestyle that would make my blood boil to the point of spontaneous combustion, it actually ain’t bad.
Not sure how I came to be like this, but I’m one of those guys who starts his morning ritual with the friendly gang over at The Today Show. Don’t ask me why, I can’t provide a legitimate answer outside of the strange way Al Roker manages to crack me up once in a blue moon when he gets to ranting about steak instead of the weather, but you gotta wonder about these news crews, right? To all us loyal viewers who find no shame in shunning those silly fuckers who start their days off with newspapers, these folks in front of the camera sure do seem to get along awfully chummy with one another. I like to think that the truth of the matter is night-and-day after it cuts to those belligerent booze hounds Kathy Lee and Hoda, but all the same, not a bad setting.
It ain’t foreign territory by any means – actually, nothing about this movie feels all too foreign – but it’s still amusing territory.
But, yeah, everything you’ve already predicted that’ll happen from just reading the synopsis up there, chances are you’re right on the money. And that is a big drawback, because up until the final Act, that whole aspect of things didn’t really bother me too much. It’s got some laughs, it makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside, and it’s a got an endearing lead you can root for, but when push comes to shove, it gets a little too sappy for my taste.
Also hate it when characters are just so extreme with their shitty bedside manner. Like, every time this girl asks for someone to just back her up and have some kind of faith in her, the usual response tends to be: “YOU WILL FAIL! YOU’RE BREAKING YOUR MOTHER’S HEART! IF YOU EVEN LOOK AT ME, I AM GOING TO SHOOT MYSELF IN THE FACE!” It’s just ridiculous, man. Even though no one actually goes through with giving themselves a lead salad, who the eff would anyone say anything like that to somebody? Ugh, too much eye-rolling for one man to handle.
But that’s just the movie this is, and that’s alright. You probably know what you’re getting into when you buy the ticket and that’s what you’re gonna get.
And as for the cast, don’t have much to complain about. Rachel McAdams does her thing as Becky Fuller; Diane Keaton continues to be a peach as co-lead anchor Colleen Peck; Patrick Wilson is still making my fiancee weak in the knees with his All-American studliness as McAdams’ main squeeze; and it’s so damn good to see Harrison Ford not in an action movie for once. His turn as the crotchetiest mother effer in the biz, lead anchor Mike Pomeroy, is a nice change from him getting nuked in fridges. Dude plays a swell antihero and I’m glad to see him taking on roles that seem less suited for Jack Ryan and more fitting for a 68-year-old veteran actor. The glory days of space smuggling are long gone, but at least he’s got the best character in this whole movie.
Jeff Goldblum is also here as McAdams’ boss, and I don’t know what it is, but I am loving Jeff Goldblum lately. For a long time there I more or less equated him with the funky way he was plugging iMacs back in the day, but I’m now starting to realize that he’s kind of the man. He doesn’t have a huge role here and it doesn’t require a whole lot out of him, but I don’t know why he ever stopped being a leading man. No one delivers lines quite like he does, and it’s just a rip watching him do it. This is Seth Brundle, people. If this guy didn’t download a virus into the alien mothership, Will Smith would probably be six-feet deep next to Data. Someone give this guy the spotlight again!
Anyway, Morning Glory is nice. One of those movies that continues to remind me why I never want to own a Blackberry and why I sincerely cherish the many benefits of working a nine-to-five schedule, and it’s a sweet little cut-and-dry story about following your dreams. It knows what it is, it ain’t an Oscar contender, but it’s a feel-good escape that shouldn’t disappoint if you don’t go in with any wild expectations. Also cool to see a movie that was filmed in a building where I used to work. It’s like it was speaking to me…