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We were all so young.

That is all,

-Shady

Up in the Air (Paramount)

1. The leading cast is superb, with wonderful performances from George Clooney, Anna Kendrick, and Vera Farmiga (who has a bit of egg on her face recently from the craptastic “Orphan”). Even Danny McBride does a great job, which I didn’t expect at all. I’ve always seen him as somewhat of a one-trick pony, but his performance as a fiance with cold feet manages to be as sweet as it is subtle.

2. Fantastic (and also subtle) cameos from Zach Galifianakis, J.K. Simmons and Sam Elliott. Throw in guest appearances from both Cut Chemist and Young MC (yes, you read that correctly), and you’ve got yourself a cast that is as talented as it is bizarre. (Note: Cut Chemist also showed up in Jason Reitman’s last movie, “Juno.”)

3. Don’t be fooled into thinking that this is a romantic comedy because it’s anything but. Some of the commercials and promos make it seem that way, but what lies underneath is an honest and realistic story about wants vs. needs, love vs. career, and hopes vs. reality. You know, a lot like real life.

4. One of my complaints of “Juno” was that every character in the film became an unrealistic caricature of screenwriter Diablo Cody. But this movie was co-written by Sheldon Turner and Reitman himself (and based on a novel by Walter Kirn) and is void of both heavy slang and pop culture references as made popular by filmmakers like Cody and Kevin Smith. This isn’t an indie film that only a select group of hipsters will get. It’s bigger than that, delivering a message that is more universal than it is elite. It might not be loved by every person who sees it, but I think it would be a hard movie for someone to dislike.

5. This film managed to squeeze its way into my top-five favorite films of the year, and is possibly (I have to let it soak in a little bit) my favorite live-action film of the batch. (I have two animated films in my top five.) I’ve always said that a great film will leave me jealous; jealous that I didn’t think of it, jealous that I didn’t write it, and jealous that I didn’t create it. “Up in the Air” did all three of those things, and there’s really no better compliment than that.

Even straight men love George Clooney,

-Shady