Friday, November 26, 2010

What's the REAL story, morning glory?

Although the movie itself looks like a rehash of a couple other flicks ("The Devil Wears Broadcast News") and has a title that sounds more like a muffin than a movie, I'll at least give "Morning Glory" credit for a more original poster:

In the world of movie marketing, I'm sure it was a "daring" decision to obscure Rachel McAdams' face with both a coffee cup and the superimposed type, but I suppose some of the risk is offset by a layout that fills the poster with as much of her body as possible.

But despite Ms. McAdams' obvious appeal, I'm more interested here in the floating copy that seems intended less as a typical slogan than a catchy phrase to help compensate for the somewhat baffling movie title.

And I'm sure that, to many in the movie's prime demographic, the phrase is nothing more than a lift from the title of the 1995 album by this popular U.K. band,

...and for the scribe who placed that copy on the poster, it might be. (Probably not coincidentally, the album featured a song named "Morning Glory" as well). But you can actually trace that expression back to at least this 1960 Broadway musical,

...based on the Elvis Presley phenomenon and teenage-girl hysteria. Act one introduced a group of gossipy girlfriends in an overlapping series of musical telephone conversations, that included the phrase in question:
-Hi, Nancy!
-Hi, Helen!
-What's the story, morning glory?
-What's tale, nightingale?
-Tell me quick about Hugo and Kim!
-Hi, Margie!
-Hi, Alice!
-What's the story, morning glory?
-What's the word, humming bird?
-Have you heard about Hugo and Kim?
(Incidentally, the song was delivered in a cleverly designed set that stages the scene in perfect symbolism:)

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