Review: Shattered Glass, by Anonymous!
1998, young journalist, Stephen Glass (Hayden Christensen,
`Attack Of The Clones`), was at the top of his game
writing for the respected political magazine, The
New Republic. Churning out story after story, he was
beloved by his co-workers (including Chloe Sevigny
and Melanie Lynskey) for his charming, self-deprecating
demeanor, and by his editors for his ability to write
colorful stories. When Glass's latest article covering
a computer hacker becomes the focus of a rival's fact-checking
eye (Steve Zahn), Glass's inability to substantiate
his sources starts to become worrisome to his editor,
Chuck Lane (Peter Sarsgaard, `Boys Dont Cry`).
As Lane begins to investigate Glass's escalating deceptions,
the editor soon learns just how fraudulent Glass has
truly been with his stories throughout his time at
on the true story of the real Glass's infamous hoaxes,
`Shattered Glass' is a film that probes the paranoia,
confusion, and repulsion that was directed at Glass
during this turbulent time. The Glass saga is ripe
for exploration again, since the very same incident
occurred this year with a New York Times writer named
Jayson Blair. `Glass' helps get inside the mind of
an impulsive soul seeking a way to stand out in front
of his bosses, as well as savagely questing for adoration.
`Shattered Glass' is careful not to make Glass solely
an unethical beast, but it also doesn't make excuses
for his reckless behavior - which is deeply needed
for the film to work. The audience should be able
to feel the wonderment, panic, and desperation of
a mind that goes so far to cover its lies, it becomes
unaware of what the truth is anymore. In that regard,
`Glass' is wildly successful.
must be paid to the cast, which is a corral of fantastic
young talent. The film really belongs to Hayden Christensen
and Peter Sarsgaard, who ride this roller coaster
of trust and betrayal impressively with their roles.
Christensen nails Glass's overconfidence and perpetual
self-pitying suspicion perfectly, creating a concrete
portrayal of ambition turned sour. For those who pooh-pooh
his work in the `Star Wars' films: do the both of
us a favor and check out how Christensen manages to
convey so much self-loathing and concealed pride in
one look. It's remarkable. The same goes for Sarsgaard,
who develops the film's best dramatic arc: the slow
reveal of deception as Lane begins to discover Glass's
lies. A consistently reliable supporting talent (`K-19`),
Sarsgaard shines here unlike ever before.
Glass' hits the screen from writer/director Billy
Ray. This is Ray's first time behind the camera, but
one would never know that from the finished product.
This is as clean as filmmaking can get. Ray chooses
economy over style and presents Glass's world as the
paranoid, ego-boosting environment it is. Ray's previous
screenwriting foibles included the Bruce Willis dud,
`The Color Of Night,' and one of the worst films of
1997, `Volcano.' It's a small miracle that `Glass'
has turned out so good after looking at Ray's filmography.
The film takes place mostly in the cubicles and offices
of wet-behind-the-ears journalists, but Ray breathes
life into these surroundings. Where there could be
just talking heads and office politics, Ray fashions
The New Republic workplace as a battlefield of writers
using gossip, charm, and occasionally genuine talent
to rise to the top. The newsroom hasn't looked this
exhilarating since `All the President's Men.'
Glass' is a film that could have been as dry and boring
reading The New Republic, but Ray makes
conscious choices to keep the drama securely wound
and permits the true story and commanding performances
to compensate for lack of scope or budget. As riveting
as any action blockbuster, `Shattered Glass' is further
proof that there is occasionally better drama behind
version 1, by Greg Tingle
Hayden Christensen, Peter Sarsgaard, Chloë Sevigny,
Steve Zahn, Melanie Lynskey, Hank Azaria, Rosario
Director: Billy Ray
Producers: Craig Baumgarten, Marc Butan, Tove Christensen,
Gaye Hirsch, Adam Merims
Screenplay: Billy Ray, based on the article by H.G.
Cinematography: Mandy Walker
Music: Mychael Danna
U.S. Distributor: Lions Gate Films
Glass official website
Glass - Low Res
Glass - High Res
journalistic plagiarism out of control? by Greg Tingle
Makers and Movie Stars, by Greg Tingle
Tingle: Star On The Horizon
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