Tuesday, December 15, 2009

*Up in the Air*

George Clooney has finally won me over, thanks to the one-two punch of Fantastic Mr. Fox and Up in the Air. He has become the Cary Grant of his generation. It's not that he is charming and debonair, though he is. It's that he is charming and debonair with the utmost ease. It seems totally natural.

Up in the Air is a terrific movie: funny, sad, and poignant. Clooney plays Ryan Bingham, a "termination specialist." He's the guy a company calls in to fire its employees. He flies from one city to the next, secretly collecting frequent flyer miles with the hope of becoming the seventh person to reach the 10 million miles mark. He is a man without a home, purposefully unfettered by family, friends, or a romantic relationship. That is, until he meets Alex Goran (Vera Farmiga) his female doppelganger.

The film's performances are all wonderful. Vera Farmiga plays Alex with intelligence, humor, and sexiness. Anna Kendrick is great as Bingham's protege´, a mixture of Election's Tracy Flick and Sex and the City's Charlotte.

Jason Reitman is beginning to remind me of Alexander Payne (speaking of Election), who has become a master of comedies that have both warmth and depth. I loved Juno, but Up in the Air is a better movie, leaner and more focused. I can't wait to see it again.

Just announced: Up in the Air is getting some Golden Globe lovin'.