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Up In The Air review

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Up In The Air


R 109 min



So here’s one that could easily have slipped under my radar.

From the trailers and the hokey title it could easily be mistaken for some cliche riddled date flick tailor made for Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts.

Of course I don’t suppose the Golden Globes would have been so generous with 6 nominations if UP IN THE AIR hadn’t been substantial. Anyway not only was this a safe choice for those of us who hate a theater full of kids, but a pleasant surprise on screen as well. Director Jason Reitman (son of Ivan-GHOSTBUSTERS and STRIPES) took what could have easily been a bland chick flick and turned it into one of the season’s best comedies.

At first glance the plot summary looks pretty mundane. Middle aged executive hatchet man (George Clooney), consumed with his job to the exclusion of real romantic attachment is paired up with a young female exec (the irresistible Anna Kendrick ) whose job it is to eliminate his own position.

There’s even a sub plot that involves a family wedding he’ll attend with an erstwhile paramour (Vera Farmiga) and you can almost smell the saccharine climax that could have been in lesser hands.

But to paraphrase the late Billy Mays, wait, there’s more.

This is a quality cast great directing and a plot that never crosses over into shlock. Farmiga and Kendrick are perfect and Clooney, whether or not you like his politics, is a true movie star.

It’s funny, touching, sad and satirical with a bittersweet twist that sets it clearly above the date movie genre. It’s my surprise of the season.




Email westsidesteve@aol.com

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