Morning Glory (2010)

Sacked from her old job and left to twiddle her workaholic thumbs, Becky (Rachel McAdams) is thrown a life-line by failing morning TV news show DayBreak. Tasked with improving the show’s pitiful ratings and breathing new life into its unappealing dynamic, Becky looks further than ever from attaining her dream job at the Today Show. Ditching the resident pervert and replacing him with egotistical reporting legend, Mike Pomeroy (Harrison Ford), it quickly becomes apparent to all but Becky that she might have taken on more than she can chew. At odds with existing anchor Colleen Peck (Diane Keaton) almost immediately,  Becky finds herself in conflict with Mike and struggling to keep her fledgeling relationship with Adam Bennett (Patrick Wilson) out of the firing line.

Morning Glory has all the makings of a cliché-ridden chick-flick – it boasts an accident-prone, hard-working heroine, a dream job and a problematic romance; I’d even give you good odds that you’d be able to predict the ending from your first encounter with Becky – yet the movie is so well realised, so disarming and poignant, that you wont begrudge her anything. This saving grace lies with one person, and she goes by the name of Rachel McAdams.

Had anyone else been cast in the role, I might not be cursed with such a scarily face-consuming grin. Had this been a Jennifer Aniston or – God forbid – a Kate Hudson movie, our heroine might have proved a character quirk too much. As it stands, however, McAdams’ Becky is a truly adorable and sympathetic protagonist whose social ineptitude lands firmly in lovable territory. Eternally exasperated and decidedly out of her depth, it is because of her numerous flaws that McAdams truly sells her winning naivity.

Refreshingly, McAdams turbulent relationship is relatively turbulence-free, making way for another relationship to fulfil the rom side of the hyphen. As the bickering co-anchors of DayBreak, Harrison Ford and Diane Keaton exude even more sexual tension in two hours than Mulder and Scully managed over nine seasons and two movies. Succeeding on the big screens for the exact same reason they boosted DayBreak’s ratings on the small screen, their discordant rapport not only grounding the sillier stories with something approaching gravitas, but keeping the laughs coming at a truly accomplished rate.

My only problem with Morning Glory, aside from the relatively slow burning opening act, is the hits-laden soundtrack which signposts emotion I was already feeling. Boasting a story that will have you beaming from beginning to end courtesy of often hilarious character interactions alone, Natasha Bedingfield’s intrusive vocals are simply not required. That said, this is a feel-good fuzz-fest at heart and makes no attempt to reinvent the wheel – nor should it feel the need to. The parallells with director’s Roger Michell’s narrative go beyond the effect of Ford and Keaton’s awkward relationship, with the appearance that the film’s A-List cast are slumming it for a few quick laughs reflecting the character’s surrender of working door knobs – and proving all the funnier for it.

Ultimately, Morning Glory is a success because of its beautifully characterised ensemble. As McAdams revolutionises daytime television in the most heart-warmingly way possible; Keaton is snogging frogs, wind-dial obsessive Matt Malloy is passing out in a jet-fighter and Harrison Ford has the audience willing an after-the-credits-scene depicting Han Solo’s prostate exam. Morning Glory is a laugh-out loud, touching and endearing film which navigates the genre’s trademark cliche’s with a truly winning charm and grace which sets this joyous movie aside from its lesser peers.


About popcornaddiction
I am a psychology graduate, a News Writer for HeyUGuys/BestforFilm and, most importantly, a hopeless popcorn addict.

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