Up In The Air
Rating: Active Eruption
Finally, Hollywood made a fabulous film for adults. No animation, no blood and gore, no crimes were committed, no special effects. Just a wonderful drama with some terrific humor. This is hands-down the best movie of this awards season and should reap a few Oscars for best picture, director, screenplay and acting nods for George Clooney, and relative newcomers Anna Kendrick and Vera Farmiga. This film does not drag - ever. You're engaged from the first scene to the last minute, entertained by the fascinating characters, constantly changing settings, and a few plot twists thrown in.
Ryan Bingham (George Clooney) terminates employees for companies who don't want to do it themselves. Ryan's company, located in Omaha, has a couple of dozen consultants like Ryan who spend most of their time travelling around the country doing this. In Ryan's case, this is his life and travels 322 days a year. He loves this life and has set a goal of reaching 10 million frequent flier miles. Then, his company hires a young efficiency expert, Natalie, (Anna Kendrick), who devises a method to do the firing over the Internet instead of in person. This riles Ryan (and endangers his frequent-flier goal), and as a compromise with his boss, he takes Natalie underwing to show her the importance of doing this in person. Along the way, Ryan has a fling with another frequent traveler his own age - Alex (Vera Farmiga). This sets up some interesting (and often hilarious) three-way conversations during their travels. This movie is also very timely given the current economy with all of the layoffs, and how people react - it was a huge dose of reality. The director/producers decided to actually use real people who had been laid off from their jobs, and for that, I thank them.
Anyone who has ever travelled on business, has been hired into or fired from a company will really relate to this movie. Don't miss it!