The pitch-perfect and subtle nuances, the ebb and flow of the characters, and the technical craftsmanship of director/co-writer Jason Reitman combine to form a poignant story about relationships.
Ryan Bingham (George Clooney) jetsets from city to city as a sort of corporate hitman. Companies pay him top dollar to do the dirty work of firing employees. It’s strategic in a sense — the company brings in a ringer bearing the bad news, and Bingham has a way of turning negatives into logical positives.
His uncanny knack for getting into people’s personal space while remaining professionally distant comes from years of practice — he has no real relationships outside of work. He’s forsaken all human relationships for a life spent in the air with dreams of becoming a member of the airline’s prestigious 10-million frequent flyer mile program, a feat that will give him executive privileges and his name on the side of a plane.