The world has changed since Judy Holliday starred in a similar film in 1950. This version is more of the journey of the woman who changes than the Pygmalion theme of the old film.
Billie Dawn (Melanie Griffith) accompanies her millionaire bully boyfriend Harry Brock (John Goodman) to Washington. Brock hires a professor type journalist Paul Verrall (Don Johnson) to polish Billie's intellectual and social skills.
There are comical satisfying scenes such as Billie's use of the music from The Twelve Days of Christmas to teach United States Senators how to remember the amendments to the Constitution.
Goodman can play the part; he is a polished bad guy in this one. Johnson is a delight as a reserved intellectual.
Griffith plays Billie more as suppressed rather than a silly blond as Holliday did. Much of the script revolves around Goodman's character forcing Billie to feel stupid, useless and unimportant. It's a tool used by some men to control women. Billie's escape and growth in confidence are a joy to watch.
Born Yesterday gives the opportunity to smile and cheer for a woman who learns she has much more to offer than just her body.