Tuesday, 5 January 2010

Are You Mad At Me?

I'm putting it out there, and I'm not ashamed: I have a crush on Hayden Christensen, and I have since Life As A House. There, I said it. I even watched the second Star Wars film because he was in it (though I couldn't bring myself to sit through the third. Please forgive me, Hayden.) I also think that he does have some acting chops (see Life As A House again) but I think often he doesn't put them to as full a use as he could. That's fine - many better actors do the same (good morning Robert De Niro.)

(he's writing down my phone number. I swear it.)

So, I watched Shattered Glass. Deal. It also has Peter Sarsgaard in a Golden Globe nominated role, and Chloƫ Sevigny, who is another I love. Though, and no disrespect intended, who the hell is Billy Ray? The director of the film is a bit of a mystery to me.

Shattered Glass is apparently the true story of one Stephen Glass, a young reporter and, subsequently, associate editor of The New Republic, a highly-regarded American journal that, at the time the film is set, was suffering from rapidly declining readership, despite the fact that it was the 'inflight magazine of Air Force One.' Glass (Christensen) is precocious and an incredible story-teller - he seems able to get the most amazing stories, pitch them in a very entertaining way, and them write them very well, all the while whilst being a very nice guy to all those at his workplace, no matter how overworked he may have been. The only problem is - was he making them up?

Hank Azaria plays his very good initial editor Michael Kelly, who is fired and replaced by Glass' colleague Chuck Lane (Sarsgaard.) The story that creates the whirlwind of forgery accusations revolves around a hacker's conference and a very young hacker who seems to have signed a major contract with a tech firm that he hacked in order that they may police their security better. Forbes Digital journalist Adam Penenberg (Steve Zahn) begins to investigate, as this is exactly the sort of story they would like to run with, and begins to find massive inconsistencies in the story - and this is where the story goes.

It's a pretty lightweight film, but entertaining enough. Sarsgaard does an excellent job, but I do wonder why more attention wasn't given to Christensen, who seemed to pull through his freaky happiness and utter despair with a constant look of fear hovering somewhere in the background of his eyes. He was never quite trustworthy, no matter how well he sold his credentials and stories, and that isn't an easy feat to pull off.

Oh well, I don't think this is the last we've seen of Christensen (I bloody well hope not, at least.) Bring on some more drama though, boy. You can do it, you've shown it. Push yourself.

Shattered Glass: 3 stars.

1 comment:

  1. Hayden indeed is oddly charming even though he indeed is a bad actor. His performances in STAR TREK are positively horrible :) but I agree he should try more of those indie movies (it's not like he has a choice since nobody is offering him big roles in blockbusters anymore).