Jul 4, 2010

Up In the Air

Thank you for surprising me, Up in the Air. You gave me an unexpected finale. In fact, I was rolling my eyes in dread of the formulaic love scene, as George Clooney approached his lady love's apartment. I was certain he would sweep the chick into his arms and it would be another forgettable, Hollywood moment in the can, that's a wrap, etc. I heaved a gigantic sigh of relief when it turned out she was using him, was married, had kids, was not another lonely soul like him.

Probably the spoiler alert was over-the-top on this one. I am the last person to see this, right? George Clooney is always good, so no surprises there. His reaction to finally getting the 10 million frequent flyer miles was quite good. I almost felt the heartbreak I was supposed to feel. The devastation I was supposed to experience along with the fired employees just wasn't there for me. Perhaps that is more of a critique upon my own character, rather than on the actors' performances. Not once did I get choked up, but I did laugh once or twice (at funny things not sad ones). There were charming portions scattered throughout, or rather, portions that should have been charming, but just weren't...quite.

Despite all the emotion I didn't feel, I did enjoy watching this movie. I suppose if I were feeling lonely or worried about losing my job or uncertain about my life choices, I might have connected with the story more than I did. It was a new twist on an old classic in the sense that the guy who finds out he's been living for the wrong things doesn't just get to fix his life overnight. I was left with the sense that he had some work ahead of him and that he didn't know which path he would take. It kind of reminded me of Tom Hanks at the end of Cast Away (I have yet to decide if I liked that movie), hopeful because he has a chance to be happy now that he knows what that looks like, but also sad because of the time and opportunities he's lost. It's not the resolved ending with which we are so familiar, and that is what makes it good.

Last, but hardly least, Jason Bateman is a remarkable and smug and perfect boss, with his stubbly beard and gelled-over hair. I liked him in "Arrested Development" and loved him in this role. Playing him opposite George Clooney was an interesting choice. It worked for me.


  1. Oh, I did not like this movie. I thought it was totally predicable. I new there was no way he was going to get the girl. I also knew as soon as the trainee girl said the bit about "if I had a million miles, I'd just go to the airport and look at the destination board" that that is how the movie would end. Gag me.

  2. It's funny that you were gagged out and I wasn't. I guess I'm a simpleton. I expected the "travel anywhere" ending, but I still liked it. I really really loved Jason Bateman.

  3. I basically liked the movie, though not many details have stayed with me...what sticks out most in my memory is that George Clooney is easy to love. I am not a crazy George Clooney loving chick or anything, but he looks good on screen and is really a decent actor, even refreshing at times.


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