Review: Up in The Air

Finally got around to watching ‘Up in The Air’ last night; the Jason Reitman flick that stars George Clooney and  heralded as one of the year’s best.  It’s already picked up awards from the National Board of Review (Best Film, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actress, and Best Adapted Screenplay) and leads the Golden Globes with six nominations.  Interesting, all of these accolades and I her I was trying my best to stay awake throughout the entire film.

All jokes aside, don’t see this film if you are tired. Make sure you pop a red bull, 5 hour energy, or something because I guarantee you will not make it to the end.  It’s not that the film is boring, it just drags, which may be a fancier way of saying that its boring.

Nonetheless, “Up in The Air” tells the story of Ryan Bingham, a corporate downsizing specialist who spends most of his time–surprise–up in the air.  His cosmopolitan lifestyle is one he cherishes until one day it’s threatened by a young specialist Natalie, who has developed a way of firing people via video chat without ever leaving the office.  Ryan who has just met the frequent flier woman of his dreams and is at the brink of reaching ten million frequent flier miles, decides to take Natalie on one of his firing expeditions to show her the error in her logic. And thus the story unfolds.

Heres the thing, “Up in The Air” is not a bad movie in the slightest.  Is it overhyped? Maybe.

George Clooney gives a solid performance as Ryan Bingham but to be honest, it’s really nothing you haven’t seen before. This role is his bread and butter. The suave, non-committed, playboy-type–the same role he plays in almost every movie he’s been in. We get it, George!  However in the new decade it would be nice to see some type of range.

The real strength of the film lies in the screenplay written by Jason Reitman and Sheldon Turner, and Clooney’s leading ladies Anna Kendrick and Vera Farmiga. For starters, Reitman is the king of corporate satire, just check out Thank You for Smoking if you don’t believe me.  His way of taking real-life issues and making them into something that everyone can relate to and understand, is borderline amazing. “Up in the Air” is no different. It’s a well-written film that focuses on an issue that so many Americans are going through right now, job loss.  Acting wise, Anna Kendrick gives the performance of her career as the arrogant and naive Natalie.  Some of you may know her as Jessica from the ‘Twilight’ series,  but in this film she sheds all trace of her Twilight past and knocks this role out of the park.  Vera Farmiga shines also as Clooney’s frequent flier dream woman.  Fun fact: both roles were written in by Reitman and Turner to give the screenplay more depth.

As stated previously “Up in the Air” is not a bad film, it’s just a film that you have to be committed to from start to finish. And after being a busy body all day yesterday , I was only committed for about the first hour.  All in all, it was a well-written film with solid performances from everyone involved.  And at the end of the day, what more could you ask for, right?

My Grade: 8/10

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2 Responses to “Review: Up in The Air”

  1. A well-acted piece about a man’s inability to cope with a world more real than the one he lives. And the screenplay just keeps on getting better and better. Nice review, check out mine when you can!

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  1. Preparing for Hollywood’s Biggest Night! « The Real Reel - March 6, 2010

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