Morning Glory–Movie Review

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3.5 Stars
Morning Glory is a likable, amusing lightweight comedy about a morning news program.

Rachel McAdams plays Mary Richards Becky Fuller, the perky workaholic producer of a morning news show for a New Jersey TV station. She gets fired due to a corporate reorganization, but soon lands a higher-profile job as Executive Producer of Daybreak, the fourth-rated network morning news program. The problem is that this is a job nobody wants. The cast and crew are dysfunctional; the show is mired in the bottom of the ratings and executive producers are routinely hired then fired as scapegoats for the show’s failings.

On her first day Becky is forced to fire the perverted co-anchor (Ty Burrell). This leaves her scrounging for a replacement and she comes up with the idea of conscripting Mike Pomeroy (Harrison Ford), a crusty misanthropic hard-news veteran who has no interest in working on a soft-news morning program, but who ends up being forced to due to his contract with the network.

Now I have to concede that this is not a great classic. The ending is sappy and predictable, and the romance subplot with Becky and her bland hunky love interest (Patrick Wilson) is entirely forgettable. (It feels like he could have been replaced by any sufficiently good-looking actor and it would have made no difference.)

What makes this work is the quality of the writing and the rest of the cast. There’s a lot of comic talent here. It’s consistently funny (and it’s worth watching the stuff going on the the background of the shots at the studio.) McAdams is cute and sympathethic and Ford is terrific as the ultimate hard-bitten curmudgeon. The scenes between them are great. Also notable are Diane Keaton as the bitter former beauty queen who serves as co-anchor, and Jeff Goldblum as the cynical weaselly “senior producer” (is that a real title?)