Shattered Glass
Entertainment: +3
Acceptability: -1

Its 1996 when talented, ambitious 24-year-old Stephen Glass (Hayden Christensen) begins making a name for himself as an investigative reporter for The New Republic news magazine. He entertains his colleagues and editors in the newsroom with his fascinating stories. When Stephens career is at its peak, his inside story about computer hackers inspires Adam Penenberg (Steve Zahn) of an online magazine to do a follow-up. When Adam starts checking facts in Stephens article, none of them can be verified. He calls Stephens boss and editor, Chuck Lane (Peter Sarsgaard). What follows is a frantic dance as Stephen tries to stay one step ahead of Chuck by covering up one lie with more lies, but Stephen cant dance fast enough, and soon his career is shattered. With none of the usual Hollywood special effects, mega stars or silly plots, Shattered Glass will probably not have a wide distribution. But it is a fascinating, true, suspenseful story, proving that truth can be more dramatic than fiction.

Shattered Glass paints Stephen Glass, not as a hero, but as a likeable and somewhat arrogant young man who breaks the basic rule of journalism integrity. His colorful and bizarre stories intimidate the other writers, and the editors are so eager to use his material that they perform sloppy fact checks. The real hero is Chuck, the new editor trying to win over the news staff after the popular Michael Kelly (Hank Azaria) has been fired. Knowing the magazines reputation is at stake, Chuck conducts his own investigation and finds that over half of Stephens 41 articles have been fake. He forces the over-confident writer to take responsibility for his actions. Like his coworkers, viewers will want to believe Stephen until his credibility unravels. There is no violence or sex, but foul language is the films downfall. A hackers convention scene shows some drug use and a description of a homosexual kiss. This quality film would be recommended by Preview after a little editing.

Preview Reviewer: Mary Draughon
Distributor: Lions Gate

Crude Language: Few (2) times moderate.
Obscene Language: Many (12) times strong (f-word 1, s-word 6); moderate (other 5)
Profanity: Several (6) times strong (GD 1, JC 2, J 1, C-sake 1); moderate (G-sake 1)
Violence: None
Sexual Intercourse: None
Nudity: None
Homosexual Conduct: None, but description of a homosexual kiss
Sexually Suggestive Action/Dialog: None
Drug Abuse: Few times moderate (drug use at convention)
Other: Theme of integrity as key to success; importance of taking responsibility for ones actions
Running Time: 95 minutes
Intended Audience: Teens and adults

Copyright Preview Family Movie Review (