As in his previous hit Thank You For Smoking, Jason Reitman deals with some strange occupational choices. This time the movie is about Ryan Bingham, who’s job is to fire people (excuse me, the proper term is let go). He spends most of his time flying from one company to another (hence the title of the movie) and firing people. This line of work has a huge impact on his life, he is unmarried, without any attachments to people and in a strange world of credit cards, privileged services and other stuff that start with platinum or elite. When a new employee arrives to his company and threatens to jeopardize this style of living he will try to stop her.
Another great role for George Clooney that is in a similar movie The Man Who Stare At Goats. Although the movie has its ups and downs, it deals with very important issues and it tries to tackle some of the questions that usually people are afraid to ask. I think you can learn a few things from it, or at least see some interesting carrier choices. Up in the Air also examines the downfall of the economy and ways in which it influenced lives of the entire nation.
Director: Jason Reitman
Cast: George Clooney, Vera Farmiga, Anna Kendrick, Jason Bateman, Amy Morton
Fun Stuff: A large amount of the people we see fired in the film are not actors but people who were recently laid off. The filmmakers put out ads in St. Louis and Detroit posing as a documentary crew looking to document the effect of the recession. When people showed up, they were instructed to treat the camera like the person who fired them and respond as they did or use the opportunity to say what they wished they had. A way to discern who are the actors and who are the real people is that the real people do not have dialogue with George Clooney or Anna Kendrick, as they were shot separately. Jason Reitman did this intentionally, feeling that the real people would freak out Clooney and Kendrick.