Shattered Glass (8/10)
2003 by Tony Medley
Blair may be the most famous creative writer of factual stories for a
left wing publication (The New York Times), but Stephen Glass was
the first, writing his fiction for The New Republic.
Glass wrote 27 fabricated articles for TNR from 1995-98. His
malfeasance came to light when Forbes Digital Tool, an online
magazine, started investigating and asking tough questions that Glass
tried to answer.
(Hayden Christensen) is a young, obsequious writer who kisses up to
everyone, and seemingly apologizes for everything he does. His editor,
Chuck Lane (Peter Sarsgaard), slowly becomes suspicious when faced with
penetrating questions by the Forbes writers. Lane is not viewed
favorably by the TNR staff because he has replaced popular editor
Michael Kelly (Hank Azaria). Despite this, he perseveres in
Glass starts out very slow.
But if you can make it through the first half hour, the final hour is
compelling as Glassís world slowly falls apart, as does he, despite
the support of his fellow staff members, who feel that Lane is picking
on Glass. Glassís descent into infamy is mesmerizing to watch.
the technique of having Glass give a lecture to a high school journalism
class, taught by his former teacher, to set things up. The many cuts
back to his lecture to the class slow the first half hour. I guess
theyíre trying to make a point of his hypocrisy, but itís
unnecessary considering what follows, which is the real story and needs
no Hollywood storytelling boost.
Christensen and Sarsgaard give exceptional performances. Writer-Director
Billy Ray has produced a well-written film that educates and entertains.
What more can you want?