Up in the air film, and a bit more on community…

I have just watched this film.

It both depressed me and uplifted me at the same time.

The film stars George Clooney, playing a narcissistic travelling businessman, who is paid to fire workers all over America. He lives in a world without any unnecessary connection. A world that is soon to be replaced by video calls.

Along the way he gives motivational speeches to other businessmen- in which he asks them to consider what is in their backpack- all those trappings of modernity that anchor them to place and time, and restrict their freedom of opportunity. All those relationships that tie us down.

He is a kind of metaphor for post modern fluidity and disconnection.

And I think it depressed me because it is a culture and an industrial environment that is familiar- even in the public sector. A world where value is placed only on efficiency and personal goal attainment.

And it is kind of the antithesis of everything Jesus calls us to. He seemed to call us to a way of being in which living sacrificially for others is the measure of the value of a life- and in being connected to others in deep and interdependent ways.

And to celebrate this in community.

Of course, that is the point of the film.

And because it was made in Hollywood, and not by anyone Italian, French or called Ken Loach, then Clooney has an epiphany, involving his rather kooky family, and a romantic association of his own.

Then the existential/romantic crisis.

And the final resolution- which I will not spoil- watch the film!

It reminded me again of the counter culture of the Kingdom of God.

And the hope that we, the Agents of the Kingdom, might display a different way of living based on this other culture, and fed by the fruit of the Spirit.