REVIEW: UP IN THE AIR
SYNOPSIS: From Jason Reitman, the Oscarģ-nominated director of Juno, comes Up in the Air, the timely odyssey of Ryan Bingham (Oscarģ winner GEORGE CLOONEY), a corporate downsizer and consummate modern business traveler who, after years of staying happily airborne, suddenly finds himself ready to make a real connection.
REVIEW: Seven years ago before Thank You For Smoking, Writer/Director Jason Reitman began writing the screenplay for this project. Funny enough, there was an economic boom at the time and yet the subject matter in this story could not be more appropriate for todayís circumstances. Of course Jason made adjustments as time went on and his final product, well, letís just say itís a masterpiece. You know, a funny thing happened to me on the way to the theater that night . . . no actually a funny thing happened while at the theater. Unbeknownst to me, Jason Reitman himself was to make an appearance after the film for a little Q & A. That was very, very cool. Can I tell you that he is a very down-to-earth guy who can actually qualify for stand up comedian . . . yes he is that funny. (Well, it does show in his work). He mentioned getting offered the Director job for Dude Whereís My Car, but Iím not sure if he was joking. If not, I guess itís a good thing he didnít take it. Donít forget that he is an Oscar nominated Director for Juno so he has talent and that also shows in his work. Thank You For Smoking was more of a corporate satire while Juno and Up in the Air are a little more about reality, loneliness, questions that are asked, and a search for purpose. An example of how Jason is a real kind of guy, in this film he uses actual people that had recently lost their jobs and puts them in front of the camera to give a reenactment with embellishment of their reaction to the horrible news of being laid off. He said that many of them were just as good as or even better than any professional actor would be with that role. It was a highlight of the film.
Enough about Jason, on with the movie. From the very beginning the movie captivates with incredible views from, you guessed it, up in the air. The camera scans the country and gives beautiful shots of certain cities from the sky, the cities that are being traveled to by our main character. One of those is Miami baby, yeah! (Sorry, itís my hometown). So our main character, Ryan Bingham (George Clooney), works for a company that gets contracted to go to other companies and do the firing for that company. Can you believe it? An entire company exists for the purpose of going around and firing people. So Ryan is a people firer, what an occupation! The task is done in person and Ryan is one of the best agents so he travels about 90 to 95% of the year. Needless to say, he is one of the most professional travelers ever displayed on the big screen. He really does live out of his suitcase. He is so numb to traveling that he is starting to hear things. In one scene he hears a flight attendant ask, ďdo you want the cancer?Ē She is actually asking ďdo you want the can, sir?Ē She was distributing drinks. This modern travel lifestyle leads him to travel efficiently and lightly for both his work and his life. He has little to no ties with any other human including his family and relationships as well. That is until he meets Alex Goran (Vera Farmiga) who has a similar lifestyle. The sparks fly.
The cast is superb, highlighted by George Clooney and Vera Farmiga. George is sharp with this role and he is really in the zone lately. Vera keeps pace and is an excellent match for George. She is hot too even though she can be very cold. The script is smart and funny and the story is modern, intelligent, and adult. I really enjoyed watching this movie. If you do go see it, stay for the end credits for a special song. And remember, lifeís better with company.
By Cine Marcos
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Director: Jason Reitman
Writer: Jason Reitman
Duration: 1hr 49mins
Staring: George Clooney
Producer: Jeffrey Clifford
Distributor: PARAMOUNT PICTURES
Rating: R for language and some sexual
Release Date: December 4, 2009
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