Shattered Glass (2003)
Directed by: Billy Ray
Premise: A dramatization of the fall of Stephen Glass (Hayden Christensen), a writer for The New Republic who was caught falsifying his stories.
What Works: There are some very strong performances in the film, among them Hayden Christensen as Stephen Glass and Peter Sarsgaard as New Republic editor Charles Lane. Christensen’s performance has a vulnerable quality to it that captures Glass’ sophistication and allows for empathy even as he digs himself further into a hole. Sarsgaard has an equally challenging role as his character seeks to balance management decisions and loyalty to his staff. The film is also able to shed some light on the life of columnists and makes for an engaging portrayal of the industry.
What Doesn’t: A subplot about Charles Lane’s family is started but it never goes anywhere.
DVD extras: Commentary track and a 60 Minutes interview with Stephen Glass.
Bottom Line: Shattered Glass is first-rate entertainment. It is a quiet story but it has a strong impact and is very intense as it follows Glass’ breakdown. Definitely recommended for fans of All the President’s Men.
Episode: #69 (September 25, 2005)