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A Reel Life film section

Issue: Summer, 2010

Up in the Air (2009) movie review

Up, Up and Away ...


I'm like my mother, I stereotype -- it's faster.

Ryan Bingham is footloose and fancy free. Cliches, like stereotypes, are quicker. His philosophy, which he teaches, is all about the backpack. A man who spends 11 months out of 12 in the air, or in strange cities, his life is about what he carries on his back. Even his job is about transition -- he is a professional terminator, he fires people on a contract basis.

Enter Natalie, a 23-year-old with a plan to ground Ryan and his fellows and start firing people by video feed. As Ryan takes Natalie along on his route, teaching her how to "transition" people into their new lives, she questions him and his lifestyle and he in turn questions her remote by-text by-web theoretical, number-crunched solutions.

Movie poster, Up in the Air; Festivale film review; 220x326

Movie poster, Up in the Air
The story of a man ready to make a connection.

Life's better with company

Another loyalty-card travelling junkie, Alex, who is Ryan's like-interest contrasts the expectations of a woman in her thirties with Natalie's own expectations. Alex questions the definition of what 'settling' truly is.

The movie drags a couple of times, but overall it is a smart and thoughtful movie, beautifully photographed and well-performed.

Very good entertainment and worth a second look.

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by Ali Kayn
Due for Australian release 14 January 2010
For credits and official site details, see below
Search Festivale for more work by the film-makers below.

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Just the facts:

Title: Up in the Air (2009)
Written by: Jason Reitman, Sheldon Turner (scr), Walter Kim (novel)
Directed by: Jason Reitman
Running time: 109 mins
Rating: M

The Players: George Clooney, Vera Farmiga, Anna Kendrick, Jason Bateman,

Official website:
IMDb entry

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