Posted by Parrish Tigh on November 17, 2010 at 12:10 am
I love romantic comedies. Just love ‘em. They’re always happy stories that I know will end well. Structure is almost always the same so the difference in the films is in the protagonist’s situation and the cast itself.
So here’s my problem with Morning Glory. Didn’t we already see this protagonist? Katherine Heigl’s Abby Richter in The Ugly Truth is a TV executive with falling ratings and a star she couldn’t work with. I loved The Ugly Truth so I’m content with the revamping of the character, but don’t go into the theatre expecting to see a character you’ve haven’t seen before – you’ll be disappointed. Rachel McAdams does bring her own sparkle to the screen – a much more and endearing character than Heigl’s, but the similarity is still so striking that it cannot be escaped.
It is Harrison Ford, however, who saves the film. His gravitas balances out the immense amount of comedy, grounding the film in a way that makes the laughs more brilliant and the seriousness even heavier. Morning Glory is hysterical, there’s no denying it. I laughed for almost the entire film. From physical gags to inside jokes to “On Air” moments, the comedy part of the romantic comedy is definitely there. The romance, on the other hand…
Patrick Wilson, while a talented actor, was both underused and unnecessary. He was part of a romance that was not developed. The couples problems were superficial and the scenes rather absurd at times. The rest of the movie seems to have been written by another person. That story is clever and fun, with actions and consequences that are motivated and are reasonable. This story, of a young professional who falls in love, is a series of moments that have no driving force, no reason to occur. McAdam’s Becky lives and breathes her work but a hot man asks her out and there we go! She jumps at the chance, despite her overeager protests at the beginning of the film. She is either a massive hypocrite or someone along the way said there needed to be a love story and it was put in at the last minute and with great reluctance.
And now here’s my question. What would be so bad about her not having a man? As a professional obsessed with her job, she proves over and over she doesn’t have time for a man. Maybe at the end of the story, she’s changed enough to let a man in, but the film forces one on her too early – she hasn’t yet changed. With the world changing the way it is, there are more and more women in executive positions, more women providing solely for their families and more women living alone. Is it a duty for a romantic comedy to reflect the world or to paint a picture of a lonely woman’s ideal world?
I digress. This movie is not designed to inspire you to question and reevaluate your life. But that’s not why you go to see a romantic comedy. You go to watch a happy story with well-known actors and fun, yet predictable, ending. And this film definitely succeeds in that.