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Posts Tagged ‘up in the air’

The Oscars Preview: Part 2 – My Picks

I waited to write this column until I saw A Serious Man, the last of the bigger Oscar nominees I had yet to see. Ummm yeah…I shouldn’t have bothered. I haven’t included every category because I feel I couldn’t appropriately address everything, and while I love original scores, the music wasn’t fresh in my mind for a lot of films and as such felt I couldn’t give an informed opinion. However, I would like to note that Abel Korzeniowski & Shigeru Umebayashi’s score for A Single Man is beautiful and everyone should check it out if they enjoy that kind of thing.

Anyway, here’s my selections for nominations, and again, picks for what I would personally choose as my best of the year in bold. And this includes my Top 10 of 2009. Have I egregiously left anything out? Let me know and fire back in the comments below.

Read the rest of the article at my domain, www.cineastejohn.com.

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Review: Up In The Air.

Ryan Bingham (George Clooney) spends most of his life traveling; 322 days last year, according to his count. He fires people for a living, traveling across the country from office to office to handle mass layoffs that inept bosses fail to stomach. He also works part-time as a motivational speaker with his “What’s in your backpack” philosophy of minimizing your life. He’s great at his job, meets women on the road (Vera Farmiga plays love interest Alex Goran) and the lifestyle suits him perfectly. But his way of life is threatened when Natalie Keener (Anna Kendrick), a young, hot-shot Cornell grad, comes in with plans to cut corporate costs by implementing a video chat system to fire employees. For his final trip “up in the air”, Bingham’s boss Craig Gregory (Jason Bateman) charges Bingham with showing Keener the ropes and reality of firing for on the job training before the company fully transitions to the new system.

We’ve all seen George Clooney be charming, and in that respect this role is perfect for him, and even written by  Juno director Jason Reitman with Clooney in mind. But what makes this performance special is the complexity that comes with his charming, smooth nature. There’s a unique innocence to his charisma, a pleasure in enjoying his world and satisfaction in being great at what he does.

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