Up In the Air

With a job that has him traveling around the country firing people, Ryan Bingham leads an empty life out of a suitcase, until his company does the unexpected: ground him. Anna Kendrick, Vera Farmiga and George Clooney star in this film, which was directed and written by Jason Reitman (Juno, Thank You For Smoking).

9 out of 10

Life is better with company. Well, sometimes.

I’ve never seen a movie with a more honest script. There are moments where it was like listening to myself talk to myself as the characters conversed.

And, like life, it’s full of the walls we surround ourselves with and the disappointments and heartache we endure when we let those walls down. Clooney plays a devout bachelor, workaholic who spends more time on airplanes than in his barren apartment. He meets a woman who is his female counterpart. They hit it off, he lets his guard down, and is of course hurt in the end.

But from heartache and sacrifice comes growth, which is what Clooney’s character needed. He was a man whose job was laying people off — the economy and layoffs play a major theme in the film. It plays with the idea that a man who does this for a living — and does it very well — has to ward off emotions and relationships to survive.

We all have things we try to keep at bay, whether it’s love, issues in our relationships with family, friends and coworkers, death or a difficult task. You can put off heartache, or be brave enough to let yourself feel it.

Reitman, who directed and wrote, has a bright future ahead. This is a comedy with characters and dialogue that grab us with a sense of reality and vulnerability.

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