'Shattered Glass' details a journalist's lack of integrity
“Shattered Glass” brings to the screen the true story of Stephen Glass, a young journalist who writes for “The National Review.” Glass is the youngest reporter on a staff of 15 whose average age is 26 years old, and he is getting pressure from his parents to go to law school at Georgetown.
Hayden Christensen plays Glass as a geeky suck-up with questionable morals. With the exception of Chuck Lane, Glass is admired by the entire staff of “The National Review” for his entertaining pitches and stories. He also maintains a veneer of false modesty by ending his pitches with a statement of how it is kind of stupid and he probably won’t finish it anyway.
When an online magazine run by “Forbes” starts looking into the stories, they cannot find any of the people in the stories or the companies that are mentioned. Glass goes into full cover mode creating web sites and false phone numbers.
The length and breadth of his lying is as impressive as it would be disturbing.
The movie exposes how one person can mess with the integrity of a magazine and a profession. As newsrooms get leaner, it will become harder to make sure that the news is correct. Anyone in journalism should see this film. For others, the middle drags a bit, but the compulsive and unrepentant lying of Glass is fascinating.
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