January 23, 2011 1 Comment
Harrison Ford hasn’t looked this comfortable in years.
Morning Glory is a lesson in what to do with an aging actor, who is incredibly talented, cerebral and still darned handsome.
The film is about young producer Becky Fuller, who’s at the end of her rope when she’s offered a job on a morning show with incredibly low ratings.
The producer, played by the adorable Rachel McAdams, comes up with the plan to replace the perverted, negative anchor on the show with the grumpy, belligerent award-winning reporter, played by Ford.
Ford and Keaton
The banter between these two seasoned professionals was often acerbic, edgy and rip-roaringly funny.
In fact, it would have been nice if there was quite a bit more of it.
Clearly the two prized stallions of the film could have easily over-shadowed the others.
McAdams held her own
Still, McAdams clearly has chops, and holding her own with Ford and Keaton (no small task) places her as a leading lady with a promising future.
In Morning Glory, McAdams proves not only that she can hold her own as a leading actress, but also that she is potentially a great physical comedian.
Other notable performances were by John Pankow, who’s well-known for his stint on the television hit Mad About You.
As assistant producer, he won audiences over with his tenderness towards McAdams’ character.
Jeff Goldblum, as network television executive Jerry Barnes, provides a fair amount of conflict, as McAdams tries to convince him to fight for the show.
But Goldblum, an actor with great comedic timing, could have been put to better use.
Good writing and direction
Director Roger Michell has often worked on films in the UK as well as the US and is no stranger to drama and comedy.
He’s directed films such as Notting Hill, Venus and Changing Lanes.
Morning Glory is further evidence that Michell can direct heavy hitters.
His use of montage in Morning Glory was brilliantly put together, eliciting side splitting laughs from the crowds as Diane Keaton was bounced around on the belly of a sumo wrestler.
There was, however, a sloppy job done on sound mixing, which at times seemed choppy and overwhelming as the music sometimes swelled unnecessarily.
Yet, despite these small flaws that only really affected a small area of the film near its end, Morning Glory is a film that will have audiences leaving the theatre feeling an ample amount of gleeful mirth.
The film is clever in so far as it doesn’t shy away from the current discourse regarding television reporting, such as news versus entertainment and is soft news a valid form of journalism.
These issues come up regularly in the banter between Ford and Keaton leaving no room for criticism about a film that asks, ‘What bad things can you say about morning shows that we haven’t already said?’
Writer Aline Brosh Mckenna, who also wrote The Devil Wears Prada, is greatly responsible for this clever handling of the world of morning television news in the film.
Morning Glory delivers quite well and will undoubtedly become a DVD summer favourite.