A (slightly) better review of Up In The Air

Sunday January 10th 2010


Waaaaaaaay back in October we saw Up in the Air at the London Film Festival. This was our ‘review’ and though it may have been fit for purpose back in Oh Nine, it doesn’t really stand up in The Mighty Ten. Especially when the movie’s currently sitting at No. 2 on our Best of 2010 list.

Unfortunately, we’re also running out of review gimmicks, so we’ve gone with lists:

THE FIVE BEST THINGS ABOUT UP IN THE AIR

1. Anna Kendrick and Vera Farmiga.
These kind of roles are what the Supporting Actress Oscar was made for. Perfectly timed, always contributive to the narrative and expertly performed by Kendles and Farmy. I’m still in awe of Kendrick’s seamless transition into playing adult characters.

2. The Title Sequence.
Joyous, absolutely joyous. Expect to see on The Art of the Title Sequence before the year is out.

3. George Clooney.
It’s hard to pinpoint exactly when the Cloons became a top-class acting man, but it has certainly happened. This is yet another ‘iconic’ role for him. As if he needs another.

4. The Humour.
I saw UITA at a 9am (!) Wednesday screening at the Vue West End. Under normal circumstances, the ‘critical throng’ would be chatting and derisively snorting their way through the entire ordeal, but for some reason it turned into what can only be described as ‘a laugh riot’ (sorry).

5. Jason Reitman.
To be entirely honest, I didn’t think JR deserved his directing nomination for Juno. Like Little Miss Sunshine before it and Slumdog after it, it just turned into one of those ‘Yes We Can!’ indie pseudo-sleeper hits that effortlessly got nominated in every category. This year, however, is his for the taking. Fuck what you heard about James Cameron.

THE FIVE WORST THINGS ABOUT UP IN THE AIR

1. The Wedding Subplot.
You’ll understand when you’ve seen it.

2. The Topicality.
There’s something a little too ‘credit crunch’ about the whole thing, particularly evident in the talking head interviews with recently laid off office workers.

3. The End Credits.
Featuring a horribly sincere indie folk song (called Up in the Air – gah!) given to the director by some guy who heard he was making the movie and thought he’d try his luck. Luckily for him and unluckily for us, it paid off.

4. The Oscars.
It can be hard not to spend most of the movie’s duration spotting Oscar nominations. Not that this is necessarily the movie’s fault.

5. Jason Reitman.
This isn’t going to change anyone’s mind about Jason Reitman. Those who disliked what he did with Thank You For Smoking and Juno will be equally ravenous.

IN SHORT

See it you mug.