Artvoice: Buffalo's #1 Newsweekly
Home Blogs Web Features Calendar Listings Artvoice TV Real Estate Classifieds Contact

Up In The Air

There was a moment during the local preview for Jason Reitman’s Up in the Air last week when the large audience in the multiplex’s theater went virtually silent. There was nary a sound of any sort—no coughs, no feet shuffling—save for those coming from the theater speakers as up on the screen a stout, middle-aged man cried softly and seemed to stare into some newly opened void. He’d just been told that his job of many years duration was being terminated. The very young, no-nonsense woman delivering this dreaded news briskly told him to try to imagine a promising new future. The devastated guy responded that at 57, he had no future in today’s bear pit of a job market. They weren’t speaking to each other face-to-face. They were connected by a computer hook-up, even though they were in adjacent rooms, which lent an unsettling surreal quality to the scene. And as I said, the audience was rapt. As well it might be, since it’s one of the more absorbing—if disturbing—scenes in the movie.


Full disclosure: I never caught the bug for Italian cinema of the 1960s that infests most cinephiles; Rob Marshall’s film of Chicago gave me a headache and little else.

Sherlock Holmes

That this is not going to be your father’s or grand-father’s Sherlock Holmes is clear in the opening seconds of this film, even if you have your eyes closed: The deafening music and clattering sound effects as we join the great detective and his aide Dr. Watson in the middle of a chase erase doubt where none probably existed in the first place.

Me and Orson Welles

In 1937, actor-director-impresario Orson Welles and his partner John Houseman found themselves frozen out of the Federal Theatre project, funded by the Roosevelt administration’s Works Projects Administration, when they defied their federal sponsor by going through with a production of Mark Blickstein’s musical labor drama Cradle Will Rock.

The Young Victoria

We all think the same thing on hearing the name of Queen Victoria, England’s longest-reigning monarch (at least until Elizabeth II manages to hold her place for seven more years): the dowdy old woman who ruled over an era of stilted manners and sexual repression.

Back to issue index