3.5 out of 5 stars

Morning Glory opens with a scene that's been done in movies time and time again. An eccentric, pre-occupied morning news show producer named Becky, played by Rachel McAdams, meets a handsome fellow on a blind date. Throughout the date Becky talks far too much and cannot separate herself from her cell phone. The minute Becky's back is turned her date asks for the check. From there the movie delivers another tired scene where Becky thinks she's getting a promotion but ends up getting fired.

Ten minutes into Morning Glory I was ready to declare it as just another formulaic romantic comedy. From that point on though, something interesting happens to the movie. As opposed to some other comedies of its kind like The Ugly Truth and You Again, Morning Glory truly gets its act together beyond its exposition. The end result isn't necessarily unpredictable or mandatory to see. However, it certainly leaves you with a feeling of enjoyment.

After getting canned Becky manages to find a job as a producer for "Daybreak," the morning news show with the lowest ratings. Her new boss, played by Jeff Goldblum, practically tells her off the bat that he doesn't believe in her ability to pull the show out of the toilet. But anybody who has ever seen another movie knows that by the end Becky will indeed prevail.

Diane Keaton plays the icy senior anchor on the show, Colleen Peck, who has little faith in Becky either. Becky thinks a new co-anchor to opposite Colleen is just what "Daybreak" needs. She sets her eyes on hiring Mike Porneroy, a legendary reporter played by Harrison Ford. When she finally meets the journalist she idolized so much though, he turns out to be more hot-tempered than Clint Eastwood's character in Gran Torino. Since Mike is under contract though, he is left with little choice but to participate.

McAdams hasn't quite reached the heights of actresses such as Anne Hathaway and Reese Witherspoon in terms of awards. I think she definitely has the potential though, doing some of the most underrated work from an actress in recent years. McAdams continues to prove that she can without a doubt carry a romantic comedy as the endearing Becky. McAdams shines like a golden starlet here and is the principle reason to see Morning Glory.

Ford has fun with his role, stealing the film's funniest lines. Patrick Wilson is also good as Becky's love interest. If there's one weak link in the cast it would be Keaton, who you'd think would be the standout given she's the film's only Oscar-winning performer. But her character is never really used or developed, which is a bit of a shame.

Morning Glory might not be the best or most realistic film ever made about news broadcasting. There are things in the movie that would never happen on a real morning news show, like a reporter getting a tattoo on his butt live on the air. What the movie is though is funny and occasionally sweet. Seeing how most people probably want to see a movie that is funny and sweet rather than realistic, Morning Glory might be just what the doctor ordered.

Nick Spake is a college student at Arizona State University. He has been working as a film critic for five years, reviewing movies on his website, NICKPICKSFLICKS.com. Reach him at nspake@asu.edu.


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