Wednesday, February 29, 2012
Year Produced: 2010
Director: Darren Aronofsky
Producers: Ari Handel, Scott Franklin, Mike Medavoy, Arnold Messer, Brian Oliver
Written by: Andres Heinz
Natalie Portman - Nina Sayers
Mila Kunis - Lily
Vincent Cassel - Thomas Leroy
Barbare Hershey - Erica Sayers
Winona Ryder - Beth MacIntyre
Benjamin Millepied - David Moreau
Nina Sayers (Natalie Portman) is an aspiring ballet dancer who always aims for perfection, and works hard in perfecting her moves. She dances with a prominent ballet academy/company in New York City, where she resides and grew up in a single parent family. Her own mother, Erica Sayers (Barbara Hershey) was also a former ballet dancer who gave up her own dancing career when she was pregnant with Nina.
As Nina's company opens up a new season of the ever popular Swan Lake, the theatrical director, Thomas Leroy (Vincent Cassel) announces that they are looking to select a dancer to play the Swan Queen. The role of the Swan Queen is to be played by one single person; and she must be able to portray the grace and elegance of the White Swan and at the same time, the dark side of the Black Swan.
Despite the rigid requirements to play the Swan Queen, many vies for the role, including Nina, as this is a breakthrough role for their dancing.
Being the perfectionist she is, Nina practises hard but she did not perform quite as well during the audition. However, determined to get the role, Nina sought Thomas and asked him to reconsider her in the role. He showed a lack of enthusiasm and even pointed out that Nina has the qualities for the White Swan but she lacks the passion for the Black Swan. Then Thomas forcibly kissed Nina on the lips; which she returned with a bite on his lips.
Her move surprised Thomas who was happy that she had shown an aggressive side, and chose Nina for the role.
Thomas made an announcement in a party; that Beth MacIntyre (Winona Ryder), former star dancer is to retire and will be replaced by Nina, the angry Beth confronts Nina after the party.
However, shortly after, Beth was hit by a car which Thomas believed was a suicide attempt.
Meanwhile, Nina was elated to finally land the role, and starts practising so extensively that it started to worry her mother, who thinks she had started to lose herself.
However, Thomas continued to be critical of her dance moves and told her to loosen up a little. When Thomas started asking her about her sexual experience during their private conversation session, Nina started to feel uncomfortable but Thomas told her that she needed to learn to relax and let go of being perfect all the time.
As Thomas put it, sometimes perfection is to let go.
Thomas then told Nina about another dancer; Lily (Mila Kunis), whom he mentioned exhibited the qualities of the Black Swan, in her free-spirited character and Nina worries that Lily would replace her in her role and practises more intensively. She started experiencing weird happenings; where she saw her evil self staring back at her in the mirror and also herself being wounded and bleeding profusely.
Lily then tried to get to know Nina, but the latter was not too friendly as she viewed Lily as a competitor and was skeptical of her intentions. However, when Lily asked Nina for a night out and loosen up a bit, Nina accepted, although reluctant at first.
They went to the club and had a few drinks, and Lily introduced a capsule to Nina which she mentioned could make her feel better for a couple of hours but Nina refused. As Nina exits from the restroom, she spotted Lily putting the capsule into her drink and after Lily assured her that the effects are only for a few hours, Nina accepts the drink. She went home with Lily that night, drunk, much to her mother's rage and keeping her mother out of her room, she ended up having sex with Lily in her bedroom.
The next morning, Nina woke up alone and was late for her rehearsal. When she arrives at the studio, she marched up to Lily whom she spotted was already there and blamed her for not waking her up. When Lily told her that she spent the night with another man she met at the club, Nina realized that she imagined the whole scenario the previous night. Nina was also annoyed that Lily thought that she fantasized about her.
Nina started to hallucinate more and she kept seeing her evil self appearing in the mirror, and also herself being wounded most of the time. At the same time, her insecurities continued to grew and she was suspicious of Lily all the time. She saw Lily and Thomas having sex, and was evidently upset. She then visits Beth in the hospital, and was surprised to see Beth seated in a wheelchair and stabbing herself repeatedly in her face.
When her mother starts voicing her concerns over Nina's recent stress, it led to a huge argument between mother and daughter and Nina fainted. Concerned over her daughter's mental and physical health, her mother decided to stop her from going to the opening night of the Swan Lake and called the company to inform that Nina was not feeling well.
When Nina came to, she was frantic and had a row with her mother and rushes to the opening night.
Everyone was surprised to see her appearing, and Thomas informed her that he had already appointed Lily as the Swan Queen but Nina insisted that she is fit to perform the role. Thomas then allowed Nina to reprise her role, though rather reluctantly.
When Nina appeared on the stage, she appeared to be doing quite well in the first act. However, when she was being held up high by her prince (Benjamin Millepied), she started hallucinating and saw everyone humiliating her, causing the guy to lose grasp of her and she fell to the floor. Humiliated, Nina burst crying at the backstage and Thomas was furious, but Nina blamed the whole incident on David, the guy who held her.
Nina rushed into her make up room to find Lily seated there, and telling her that she will be the one to play the Black Swan, Nina rushed and shoved her aside, into the mirror. Lily then transformed into Nina's evil self, and Nina stabbed her with a shard of glass which she picked up from the broken mirror pieces on the floor.
Terrified over what she had just done, Nina hides the body in the closet and rushes out to perform.
As she was performing the Black Swan's dance, wings started sprouting behind her hands and she is finally transformed into the Black Swan.
Her astounding performance won her a standing ovation from the audience at the end of the act, much to her pleasure. She rushed towards Thomas who was complimenting her performance and kissed him on the lips, much to his surprise.
As she prepares for the final act, Nina went back to her make up room to put on her make up for the White Swan and she was shocked to see the blood seeping through the door from the closet. She covered it with a towel and continued to put on her make up. When she hears a knock and opens the door to see Lily, who came to congratulate her on her splendid performance, she was surprised and checked the closet after Lily's gone where she did not see any blood nor corpse.
She then realized she had imagined the whole thing and then discovered that she had stabbed herself in the stomach.
Holding a brave front, Nina still proceeded to go out to the stage for her final act and as she was about to act the scene of the White Swan jumping to her death, Nina saw her mother crying and smiling at the same time among the audience. She jumped beautifully, and ended the Swan Lake in a grand manner. Thomas rushed out to congratulate her, along with the other ballerinas, and they realized that Nina was bleeding. As Thomas assured her that she will be okay, she whispered, "I felt it. Perfect. It was perfect".
A very dark and intense movie about ballet, and how one's obsession with perfection could drive her to the edge of sanity. I give my thumbs up to this great script, artistic direction and the astounding performances of the actors who took part in the movie. It is no wonder the movie being nominated for several Oscar awards.
I can say that this is one of the few Oscar nominee movies which turned out to be really good and I was taken with the bold approach taken to portray a graceful and gentle art of the ballet dance into its dark side, where obsession and the strive for success becomes insanely frightening.
Natalie Portman, stretched thin (literally) as she worked hard for the role in real life, proved that her hard work was worthwhile as she shone as the star of this award-winning movie. Mila Kunis was not too bad either although her role in the movie was more of a supporting one and was rather minimum. Another one which deserved mention was Vincent Cassel, who played the instructor/director threading on the thin line of being professional and at the same time, sexually harassing his students to success very menacingly, and contributed to the dark side of the movie in general. Winona Ryder made a short appearance as the fading glory of the former swan queen who turned bitter at being phased out in the company.
Likes about the movie:
The genuine expressions of Natalie Portman in demonstrating her frustrations, anxieties, stress and the desperate need to succeed and be perfect makes one feel intense to the extent of gripping the chair while watching her. She definitely deserved to be the Best Actress in her role; or even for the Best Performance by a leading actress.
Also, the ballet performances deserved a mention as the cast were also backed up by a group of professional ballet dancers from an academy. Their contribution made the overall movie convincing in the ballet arena and was stunning.
Dislikes about the movie:
Perhaps there were certain parts when the camera tend to dim and flicks too quickly to another scene, which makes me dizzy while watching the movie. Also, the atmosphere and lighting in Natalie's house and also the ballet studio tends to be too dull; I know it's supposed to be an intense and thrilling movie, but that doesn't mean the lights have to be so eerie. Perhaps a warm glow would make it more realistic?
Watch it, and enjoy Natalie Portman's performance which was one of her best. In fact, she won the Academy Award for her performance in this movie which clearly states the obvious reason to watch this.
Facts to know about the movie:
1. The movie was nominated for five Academy awards; Best Director, Best Cinematography, Best Actress, Best Film Editing, and overall, Best Picture of the Year.
2. Natalie Portman and Mila Kunis had worked hard for the movie, and even lost lots of weight to fit into their roles.
Natalie's weight loss was quite apparent in the movie, I am sure many would have noticed.
3. Natalie Portman, besides her impressive academic records, does know ballet and that she performed 80% of the ballet dance scenes in this movie. She learnt ballet from the age of 4-13. Before the movie was filmed, Natalie went back to training for a year in preparation for her role.
Now, what else did we miss from this amazing actress? She is definitely one of my favorite actress, and who said entertainers/celebrities have nothing except glamour on their records?
Thursday, February 23, 2012
Year Produced: 2010
Director: Andy Fickman
Writer: Moe Jelline
Distributor: Touchstone Pictures
Kristen Bell - Marni Olivia Olsen
Odette Yustman - Joanna Clark (J-J)
Jamie Lee Curtis - Gail Byer Olsen
Betty White - Grandma Bunny
James Wolk - Will Olsen
Victor Garber - Mark Olsen
Billy Unger - Ben Olsen
Sigourney Weaver - Ramona Clark (Mona)
Sean Wing - Charlie
Kyle Bornheimer - Tim
Dwayne Johnson - Air Marshal
Marni Olivia Olsen (Kristen Bell) was an ostracized teenager in high school and was constantly terrorized by the popular kids, led by a group of cheerleaders and their lead, J-J or Joanna Clark (Odette Yustman). She was constantly ridiculed of because of her initials; which spelt M-O-O and led a miserable life throughout high school. In one incident, she was dressed up as the school's mascot, Gator, for the school's basketball tournament in which her handsome and popular elder brother, Will, was playing in. As she was pushed over by J-J and the cheerleaders, she fell over and caused Will to miss his shoot. As a result of that incident, she was booed by the entire school and her brother was upset with her.
However, he forgave her quickly when she confided in him that she was being called a loser but refused his help when he said he would teach whoever called her that a lesson.
Marni soon grew out of her high school ways, and is now a highly publicized PR executive working for a big company in LA and was sharing her story with a bunch of new and eager PR personnels. She was promoted to a job in New York, and no longer looked like the acne-ridden, brace-wearing and bespectacled teenager as she was in school, but rather, an attractive young woman.
When Marni was informed of her brother, Will's (James Wolk) upcoming wedding, she boarded the flight home and was talking to her mother on the plane when she realized that her soon-to-be sister-in-law was actually her high school arch nemesis, J-J; the one who made her high school life a living hell.
She jumped in shock, forgetting that she was on a plane, and got into an argument with the air-stewardess until an Air Marshal (Dwayne Johnson in a cameo) calmed her.
She arrived home and was delighted to see her brother, who was excited to introduce her to his fiance. Marni dreaded the moment until she met Joanna in the kitchen, who turned and embraced her excitedly while telling her how she had been looking forward to meet and to get to know Will's little sister. It seemed that Joanna had forgotten about her, much to Marni's frustration. Marni tried to provoke Joanna's memory throughout dinner and also on various trips they took together with her brother.
Marni was upset to see how Joanna was getting along with her family, as even their home grown dog was more comfortable with Joanna and growled at Marni.
As Marni's mum, Gail (Jamie Lee Curtis) tried to assure Marni to accept Joanna into the family, she herself faced her own set of problems when she was introduced to Joanna's only relative, her wealthy aunt, Ramona (Sigourney Weaver), who was Gail's best-friend turned enemy in high school.
To her dismay, Ramona is now a successful woman, owning several exclusive hotels and even flies on her own private plane.
Although Gail assured herself and her family that she had put the past behind her, she tried, on several occasions, to prove that she could outdo Ramona; in a few hilarious scenes such as the rehearsal dance routine.
While Gail and Ramona continued their silent resentment for each other, Marni refused to let the past be hidden as she tried to inform her brother of who Joanna really is. In a car ride with Joanna and Will, Marni was convinced that Joanna really remembered who she was when she started singing the infamous song she used to terrorize her with back in high school.
Determined to uncover Joanna's real character, Marni confronted her and it was obvious that Joanne did remember her but still treated her with much disrespect as she just apologized casually when Marni demanded for an apology. It was then that the two started to declare a silent war with each other as they tried to outdo each other in their dance routine, together with Gail and Ramona.
Marni was surprised that Will's best man was her high school crush, jock Charlie (Sean Wing) but being nervous around him, she ended up humiliating herself in front of him, on several occasions.
Marni was even more upset when her Grandma Bunny (Betty White) seemed to fawn over Joanna instead of her.
However, she was delighted when they bumped into Tim, a man whom Joanna was not too pleased to meet on the streets.
Marni then sought the help of her younger brother, Ben (Billy Unger) to obtain the contents of the Time Capsule from her high school.
At the rehearsal dinner, Marni even invited Tim as her partner, much to Joanna's displeasure. When Tim went on stage to give his speech, he revealed that he and Joanna used to be engaged and that he left. Will was upset that he never did know about the incident, and that Joanna was hiding it from him.
To make matters worse, a video was played which revealed Joanna as a teenager in high school and how she was a big bully, to everyone's surprise.
The video made Will furious and he left, telling Joanna that he no longer knew who she was anymore.
While Marni was being fawned over by her family as they knew she was the victim, they were surprised when a man approached Marni to return her the video and they were shocked to discover that Marni was behind the whole incident.
When Marni tried to approach Joanna to talk about the whole thing and how she only wanted an apology, the two ended up in a heated argument and a cat fight, which was witnessed with disgust and disappointment by Will.
Marni and Joanna were not the only ones having a drama that night as Gail and Ramona appeared in similar outfits and then Ramona accused Gail of always trying to upstage her and they both ended up in a fight in which they both fell into the pool.
Ramona then revealed that she hated Gail, even when they were friends as she always outdid her and made her miserable in high school. She even blamed Gail for taking away the guy she had her eyes on to senior prom. However, Ramona also sarcastically thanked Gail for motivating her to her current success. Gail then apologized and that she had no idea that she was causing so much harm to Ramona, but tells her that she had always been proud of Ramona as a friend. Gail also mentioned that her family was her accomplishment, and Ramona told her that she was jealous of Gail's loving family when she herself had gone through several failed marriages. The two friends then reconciled their differences.
Marni found Joanna in the kitchen that night; binging on junk food and wallowing in her misery. She approached her and was surprised when Joanna admitted that she felt awful for being a bully to Marni back in high school and that she was always insecure as to whether her parents were proud of her. She then admitted how much she loved Will and that she had probably ruined everything. Marni forgave her after Joanna gave her the much awaited sincere apology, and she promised to help them get back together.
Marni pretended to be injured to get Will's attention and apologized to him, explaining the reason of her actions was so that she could protect him and Joanna really loved him.
As the two lovers reconcile in their tree house, Marni was talking to Ben on the lawn and was surprised when Ben told her that he had loosened the bolts on the tree house so that he could hide it from Will (Will wanted to take it to his new place after the wedding). Shortly after,the tree house collapsed, and Joanna and Will was injured and admitted to the hospital.
Joanna and Will's stay at the hospital delayed the wedding, but Marni then surprised Joanna with a wedding staged inside the hospital although both the bride and groom were bandaged and on crutches. Joanna thanked Marni, as it was the perfect wedding.
Her wedding planner seemed to be starting a romance with Tim, while Marni and Charlie were also depicted to be finally starting a romantic relationship.
As the party danced to the Hall & Oates performing, which was a wedding gift from Marni to the newlyweds, the movie ended.
During the credits, as a final twist to the ending, Joanna was shown to be introducing her own grandmother, Helen (Cloris Leachman) to Grandma Bunny. It appeared that Grandma Bunny and Helen were also high school rivals as Helen was seen to have stolen her boyfriend back then.
Grandma Bunny then stole the dancing partner from Helen and it seemed that another feud is about to unravel as the credits roll.
Kristen Bell at her best here! Awesome performance, and the star-studded cast full of great veterans made the whole movie enjoyable.
Sure, the addition of several similar plots of all the leading ladies' old feuds, but it was still hilarious all the same.
Predictable story, and ending, but a light-hearted comedy to be enjoyed with the family and friends :)
Likes about the Movie:
Kristen Bell, Jamie Lee Curtis, Sigourney Weaver, and Betty White, or should I say the female cast in the leading roles? Awesome performances by all of them, and they have clearly overshadowed the men in this movie!
Great scenes of Marni and Joanna, whenever they stand up to each other; and the pursuing cat fights between them were just hilarious.
By the way, somehow Odette Yustman just looks like Megan Fox to me, in this movie :p
Dislikes about the movie:
Not much, except for the annoying wedding planner who seemed to making too much of an appearance most of the time and why does she have to speak in so many different languages when she addresses the crowd? Just plain weird to me, a little OTT over here...
Watch the movie, and enjoy a good laugh!
Year Produced: 2009
Director: Anne Fletcher
Producers: Todd Lieberman, Sandra Bullock, David Hoberman, Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci,Kristin Burr
Written by: Pete Chiarelli
Distributor: Touchstone Pictures
Sandra Bullock - Margaret Tate
Ryan Reynolds - Andrew Paxton
Mary Steenburgen - Grace Paxton
Betty White - Annie Paxton
Craig T. Nelson - Joe Paxton
Malin Akerman - Gertrude
Andrew Paxton(Ryan Reynolds) woke up late one morning and rushed to his office, where he reached in the nick of time before his boss gets in for work. Shortly, his boss, Margaret Tate (Sandra Bullock) strides into the office, giving everyone a cold stare and it seemed that the atmosphere in the office changed from lively to dead quiet as Margaret walks in.
Being the book editor for a big NYC publishing company, Margaret seems to be the one to hold the fort in the office with Andrew as her assistant and definitely not one with a good relationship with her subordinates, let alone her co-workers.
That morning, Margaret sacked an editor, Bob Spaulding, who was being rude to her and she threatened to have him escorted out by the security guards. She then informed Andrew that he will need to work over the weekend with her, causing the poor guy to dismiss his plans to go home and celebrate his grandmother's birthday.
Margaret was then called into her bosses' office where she was informed that due to her leaving the country a few months earlier which sped up her visa's expiry which meant that she would be deported almost immediately and her position would be filled by the other editor, Bob, the guy she just fired. Desperate to retain her position and to stay in the country, she held onto Andrew who walked into the office at that moment to inform her of a phone call from a writer and she informed her bosses that she and Andrew will be getting married soon, to her bosses' and Andrew's surprise.
Margaret and Andrew then left the office to head over to the Immigration office to sort out her visa details, and she blackmailed a confused Andrew to just go along or lose his job.
At the immigration office, they were interviewed by Mr Gilbertson who seemed to have seen such situations before and remained skeptical over their relationship. Andrew then decided to play along, using promotion as his motivation and blackmail factor, and announced to the officer that they will be spending the weekend at his hometown to celebrate his grandmother's birthday and at the same time, announce their engagement to the family. Margaret was surprised but went along, when Andrew mentioned that his hometown is in Sitka, Alaska.
Once they are outside the Immigration office, Andrew makes his demands to have his manuscript published and be promoted or he will let the cat out of the bag, much to Margaret's displeasure. He then proceeded to make her propose to him in public; where she knelt down on her knees to ask him to marry her, in the middle of NYC! (Classic scene!)
They then traveled together that weekend to Sitka, Alaska, where Andrew's from and were greeted at the small airport by Andrew's mother, Grace (Mary Steenburgen) and grandmother, Annie (Betty White). As they drove through town, she was surprised to learn that Andrew's family was quite wealthy as they owned most of the businesses in town. Then she was also surprised when his mother mentioned that she had cancelled their hotel reservations and had planned for them to stay at home with the family.
Margaret was complaining about the small dingy which they had to take from the pier to get to Andrew's home, which she uncomfortably did so in her high heels, much to the amazement of Grandma Annie (or Gammy, as Andrew fondly calls her).
They arrive at the Paxton's home, which was a mansion and Margaret questions Andrew as to why he never mentioned he was rich and he said his family is rich, but he is not. Andrew was also surprised to see the whole town at his home in a welcoming party thrown by his family as he had been away for three years.
He was seen to be in an estranged relationship with his father, who seemed to look down on him. Frustrated, Andrew proceeded to announce his engagement to Margaret and the two proceeded to spin a story about how they met and how Andrew proposed (another classic scene!)
As the crowd cheered, they were applauded and forced to kiss in front of everyone (very funny!)
Margaret then also met Andrew's high school sweetheart, Gertrude (Malin Akerman).
The couple were then led to their room; which Grace had prepared and was a huge bedroom with an awesome view of the lake. That night, Margaret made Andrew sleep on the floor while she tosses uncomfortably in her bed to avoid the sunlight which was the norm even during night in Alaska.
The next morning, they woke up to a Margaret's phone ringing and as she tries frantically to get a signal, she ran downstairs and out of the house, followed by the family's cute little puppy. The eagle swooped down and took the dog, leaving Margaret frantic to get it back.
When the eagle releases the puppy, it took Margaret's phone instead (she was in the middle of a conversation)!
Then Andrew told Margaret to get dressed as his family wanted to bring her to some place.
It turned out that Margaret was led to a bar with a stripper performing and Margaret was given a lap dance which she was uncomfortable with. At the same time, Andrew and his father proceeded to have an argument and his father tried to apologize but he wouldn't accept.
Back at home, Margaret was taking a shower when she realized that she had forgotten her towel and tried to run out to get it and run into Andrew who was also completely naked! (This is another classic scene)
They both shared a light moment sharing her heart's contents that night as they both lay to sleep.
The next morning, they awoke to Grace bringing them breakfast, and the two pretended to snuggle in bed before she arrives. Grace then suggested that they should get married the next day in the barn where he and his dad got married, and Grandma persuaded them by saying that she wanted to see her grandchild before she's dead.
Margaret was touched by the kindness shown by Grandma and Grace when she was kidnapped to try on Grandma's wedding gown. She then rushed to tell Andrew that she is worried about what would happen to his family; particularly his mother and grandmother if they were to find out about their lie and Andrew assured her that it will fine, but accidentally caused her to fall overboard the speedboat. He rescued her and the two returned to the mansion.
They arrived to find that the Mr Gilberson, the Immigration officer had arrived and informed that he had contacted Andrew's father to discuss about what he believed to be the reason for their engagement. Andrew then announced that they are to be married the next day.
The next day, Margaret was wearing Gammy's wedding gown and was walked down the aisle by Gammy to Andrew. However, at the altar, Margaret broke down and confessed, to Mr. Gilbertson's delight who informed her that she has 24 hours to pack before she is deported back to Canada. Andrew tried to run after Margaret but was stopped by his father. It was then that Gammy collapsed, and thinking that it was a heart attack, they rushed her on the plane to the hospital where she made Andrew and his father promising to bury the hatchet. She then revealed that she was faking her heart attack to make them reconcile.
In the last scene, Margaret was packing her stuffs in the office and Andrew arrives, begging her to stay and confessing that he had fallen in love with her and proposed to her. They then kissed , to the applause of their colleagues in the office.
They informed Mr Gilbertson that they are engaged, and for real this time!
Alright, usually I don't really believe in short flings and how people could just fall in love within such a short time (that's me), but this movie, I will make an exception.
I have lost count over the number of times/scenes which made me hold my stomach and laugh, as it just keeps getting better!
If there is a movie to just purely entertain and yet maintain a little romance in the category of rom com, this would definitely be it!
I am a huge fan of the leads; and they definitely proved their capabilities all right in this movie!
Likes about this movie:
Any scene on Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds in it; there is never a dull moment whenever they are around!
There are so many classic scenes:
1. Immigration office whereby Andrew mentioned Sitka and Margaret was surprised but yet went along.
2. Andrew blackmailing Margaret into proposing to him on the streets, of NYC! She got down on her knees (Definitely the best scene ever!)
3. Margaret, in her heels trying to get down from a steep ladder and Andrew trying to grab her butt
4. They were forced to kiss in front of everyone
5. Them running naked into each other
6. Margaret waving the cute little puppy in the air to get the eagle's attention
7. The cute little puppy!
8. The awesome view of the lake and Alaska
Dislikes about this movie:
Nothing; in fact, the movie is too short, as I was just enjoying it too much!
Watch, watch, watch! Even I have watched it three times already, and it's still so good!
Year Produced: 2010
Director: Roger Mitchell
Producer: J.J Abrams
Writer: Aline Brosh McKenna
Distributed by: Paramount Pictures
Rachel McAdams - Becky Fuller
Harrison Ford - Mike Pomeroy
Diane Keaton - Collen Peck
Patrick Wilson - Adam
Jeff Goldblum - Jerry Barnes
Ty Burrell - Paul McVee
Matt Malloy - Ernie
Becky Fuller (Rachel McAdams) is a hardworking and aspiring news producer who was recently laid off from her job at Good Morning New Jersey, just as she was expecting a promotion. Disheartened but still determined to pursue her childhood dream to work for the Today show, she was told off by her mother who told her to get a grip on her life as her dream is just starting to sound ridiculous as she is getting older, and her time spent at work is putting off potential suitors.
Determined, Becky decided to go all the way out and submitted her applications to all the different stations in the hopes of getting a job despite her mother's concerns and her prayers were finally answered when she receives a call from IBS, for a job at Daybreak, the national morning show which she hurriedly accepts over the phone.
She attended the interview where she meets Jerry Barnes (Jeff Goldblum) who was her interviewer and was spiteful and skeptical about her previous work credits.
She leaves in disappointment and bumped into Mike Pomeroy (Harrison Ford) in the elevator. Excited and delighted to meet her idol, she tried to strike up a banter but was treated unkindly by Mike who left the elevator abruptly.
Surprised, she was told by the other passenger in the elevator that it was typical of Mike's behavior and that he labelled him as the third worst person on Earth.
Just as Becky was leaving the building, she receives a call from Jerry Barnes who told her to start work on Monday. Excited, Becky started making phone calls to rent an apartment and looked forward to her new job.
On her first day as Daybreak's executive producer, Becky realized what she had signed up for; a television show with absolutely no organization and disillusioned staff and also obviously lacking in budget. She promptly makes a lot of decisions on the spot, and even sacks Paul McVee (Ty Burrell), the co-host on Daybreak, whom she deemed as a negative influence to the team with his constant negative comments. Her action was applauded by the rest of the crew who seemed pleased to see him go.
Becky meets Colleen Peck (Diane Keaton) who was one of the hosts on Daybreak, and seemed to have suffered the poor ratings of the television show.
Collen predicts that Becky will not last long, just like the rest of the other producers as there is just no hope with this morning show.
However, with the demise of one co-host, Becky realized that she is in need of a new replacement and she had to do it fast in order to boost the ratings of the show. She had her sight set on Mike Pomeroy, whom she believed can help to take the show to a new level.
Mike was actually under the contract with IBS, but somehow he had managed to escape being utilized by the company while still getting his salary.
Driven by a clause she found in his contract that Mike is obliged to accept an official job assigned by the company or risk losing his pay, Becky pushes Mike into becoming the co-host for Daybreak.
Mike proved to be a tough addition to the team she had to manage, as he seemed to be throwing his weight around and already made an enemy in the existing co-host, Colleen Peck and together, the duo sent Becky all over the place as they could not see eye to eye with each other.
Becky was tired of the endless bickerings and tried to put them into the place.
At the same time, she bumped into the man at the elevator, whom she learnt was a producer at IBS as well.
Adam (Patrick Wilson) had worked with Mike Pomeroy previously, and taught Becky a few tips to handle him. Their friendship which was initially founded based on a common topic; Mike, soon blossomed into a romantic relationship.
However, when Becky starts to spend too much time on saving the show and refuses to take some time back, Adam's feedback angered her and proceeded to harm their relationship.
As Daybreak's ratings continues to plummet down, Becky was informed by Jerry that the show may end up being canceled. Desperate and exasperated, she turned to radical measures and was surprised to see even Mike was showing interest in a story she wanted to feature.
When she thought that Mike was going along with her to the destination, he ended up straying off their path and went to the governor's house instead where he had accused the governor on charges of racketeering and the story went live on the television which instantly boosted the show's ratings. This spike was enough to secure the television show for yet another year.
Due to Becky's success in saving the television show, she was finally called for her dream job interview with Today.
Colleen then proceeded to rub it into Mike by telling him that it was because of him that Becky will be leaving the show soon.
Mike then suddenly went into the food segment and started telling the viewers how to make a good frittata while Becky watched with a touched expression.
It was then that she realized that she was the producer they were looking for all the while at Daybreak and she decided to stay instead of going to Today.
With all main leads being my favorite actors, and also the focus of the plot being one of my interests (broadcasting and communications), it is definitely no wonder that I am definitely for this show. I love the movie, and Rachel McAdams is one good actress to play this role, with her never-ending enthusiasm and energy, she is what keeps the movie going.
The storyline is also a simple, no-brainer type that everyone already knows how it's going to end, but I just find it entertaining to watch the keen Rachel McAdams striving to keep the show going!
Likes about the movie:
Rachel McAdams definitely, and also the argument scenes between veterans Harrison Ford and Diane Keaton! Without a doubt, Harrison Ford and Diane Keaton ooze charm into the movie and Rachel just proved to be one booming Hollywood actress with her role here!
Dislikes about the movie:
Maybe the short-lived romance and the focus on Rachel and Patrick Wilson's relationship, but then again, it also seemed like Patrick Wilson's character was a little unnecessary except to add just that romance factor.
A pity, as Patrick Wilson could have done much better with a role with a little bit more meat in it.
Watch it, if you are an addict to television broadcast themed movies fan like me!:)