Ah, it’s all going splendidly for George Clooney. Flying around all over the place, living in hotels and departure lounges, a loyalty card for everything, no ties. But then some drawly-voiced little strumpet strolls in and virtualizes his job for him. What a slut. Happily, she doesn’t ruin things completely. One suicide later, and she’s out of the frame (taking her drawl with her) and things go back to normal. There’s some soul-searching as Clooney’s character is forced to ponder the possibility that his hermitic philosophy on life may be wrong, but that all goes down the pan in the third act and Clooney essentially ends up back where he started. Which is good. Frankly, if he’d ended up settling down, I’d have been mightily disappointed.
While I’ve not read the book (though I intend to), I’m willing to bet that most of the film’s smart dialogue is drawn directly from it. But while part of me is programmed to loathe most modern films (on account of them being largely without merit), there wasn’t a single part of me that didn’t love Up in the Air. It’s funny and sad and gravely pessimistic. It’s rare to find a film that engages you to such an extent that you never want it to end. Like a fantasy bag of Wotsits, if Up in the Air had carried on through the night and long into tomorrow, I’d have been a happy man. I heartily recommend it.
Oh, and there’s a pilot with a FANTASTIC moustache in it. It’s worth waiting for.