Review: Le Week-End (2013)

Le Week-End

Le Week-End marks somewhat of a return to smarts for director Roger Michell. After helming two disappointments in a row (the mildly entertaining Morning Glory and the dreary Hyde Park On Hudson), Michell reteams with regular screenwriter and friend Hanif Kureishi for their third feature collaboration and an altogether richer affair. Together, they’ve carved a resonant, heartfelt and adult drama that’s exponentially superior to Michell’s aforementioned missteps. Continue reading “Review: Le Week-End (2013)”

Review: Morning Glory (2010)

Morning Glory centers on Becky (Rachel McAdams), a hard-working morning TV show producer, who accepts the challenge of reviving struggling show Daybreak.

However, it soon becomes clear that the challenge at hand, including the task of pairing current host Colleen Peck (Diane Keaton) with respected newsman Mike Pomeroy (Harrison Ford), may be more difficult than even she can handle.

Surprisingly, despite opening with the usual generic rom-com characteristics, this is no predictable rom-com; instead more of a mature workplace comedy.

Director Roger Michell nails the direction, wonderfully transposing the busting and haphazard nature of Daybreak’s workplace to the bright, spacious and orderly environment Becky aspires to be a part of: the dizzy heights of well-rated commercial TV.

Aline Brosh McKenna’s script, in addition, is dynamic and vigorous. It uses some of the better rom-com characteristics and applies them remarkably well to the workplace comedy, increasing the films impact with fast-paced, sharp dialogue and well-rounded, emotive characters.

The performances are strong across the board. Harrison Ford, in particular, is on excellent form as the headstrong Pomeroy, and his sparring with co-star Colleen, played humorously by Keaton, is priceless.

It’s Rachel McAdams that’s the real triumph here. If, say, someone like Katherine Heigl had been cast instead, Morning Glory wouldn’t have the same pizaz it does with McAdams at the centre. Not only does she carry the film with her energetic, sleek and eminent performance, but she lifts it to a whole new level.

As an actress who has consistently delivered performances across a wide variety of genres, McAdams remains one of Hollywood’s most underrated actors. If there’s any justice, Morning Glory will do for McAdams what The Devil Wears Prada did for Anne Hathaway and Emily Blunt: propel her to universal stardom.

With a clever, grown-up script and some brilliant performances at work, Morning Glory is able to shred its predictability and become something special.