At the Movies: Morning Glory

I understand that as a reviewer I should keep my personal feelings about things on the shelf and dispassionately evaluate a movie for what it is and not let my hangups get in the way.

And that’s how I’ll do things. Tomorrow.

You see, I hate morning “news” shows. I hate the fake co-anchor banter, I hate the obsession with trying to scare us (Bedbugs ARE EVERYWHERE. And they SUCK YOUR BLOOD.), I hate the obsession with celebrity scandal (Stay tuned for our 10-minute exclusive interview with Lindsey Lohan’s mother) and I hate how they love to turn their on-air talent into the story (Watch as Matt spends the day as a Rodeo Clown!).

I tape “The Daily Show/Colbert Report” each night so I can watch it first thing in the morning instead of the “Today/GMA/Early Show” trifecta of crap. I am convinced that coffee is so bitter and delicious precisely to distract us from the horror that is morning news.

So I go into “Morning Glory” hoping that it’s a scathing satire of all that is wrong with morning news shows. Instead it glorifies and wallows in their trashiness. I was not amused. Which, given that it’s a comedy, is not a good thing.

Rachel McAdams stars as Becky, a young, workaholic TV producer. She’s like the Holly Hunter character in “Broadcast News” but without any of her journalistic integrity. Becky has just been hired to take over “Daybreak,” the perennial fourth-place morning news show of a struggling network.

By monkeying around with his contract, Becky is able to force veteran newsman Mike Pomeroy (Harrison Ford) to be the show’s new co-anchor. Mike refuses to do fluff pieces, which means he refuses to take part in 95 percent of “Daybreak.”

Now I’m hoping that Mike will stick to his guns and eventually everyone will side with him and “Daybreak” will become a hit because it breaks out of the stupidity-on-parade mold that all the other morning shows are producing as “Daybreak” becomes a respectable morning news show.

But I guess that wouldn’t be funny, so instead we watch the crusty old newsman eventually thaw and put on an apron while the ratings climb as Becky pushes the show to lower and lower levels of infotainment.

To be fair, there are a few funny moments in “Morning Glory” and Harrison Ford is very good as the crusty old newsman.  I also liked Jeff Goldblum as Becky’s boss.

Did it work for me? I suppose some will find it amusing but I just found the relationships and situations in “Morning Glory” to be forced and fake. And since I really didn’t care for the story, there’s not much here for me to recommend.


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