Up In The Air (2009)

dir. Jason Reitman. Ryan Bingham (George Clooney) travels around the USA, sacking employees of large companies on behalf of employers. He is joined by young tech-savvy Natalie Keener (Anna Kendrick), to see first hand how the work is done. I love watching Clooney flirting with Alex (Vera Farmiga), comparing loyalty cards, and bonding over their love of business travel. There is an odd tonal shift two thirds though the film, that turns the film into a more conventional comedy, which is very irritating. One part of Clooney’s character is he moonlights as a motivational speaker, and is writing a book based on his talk “What’s in your Backpack”, this is definitely in the zone of parasitic life coaches, and I wish the film explored that more, rather than the family plot. A very funny and bittersweet film, that is even more poignant right now with millions losing their jobs due to the current pandemic.

By Nicholas Hudson-Ellis

Co-Founder & Film Programs Manager of Bangkok Screening Room.

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