Amid the loneliness and isolation of an increasingly digital world, Ryan Bingham (George Clooney) seems to be the only one equipped with an suitable personal philosophy. Instead of lamenting the loss of real human connection, he embraces it, maintaining only limited ties with his family and his co-workers. In fact, he doesn’t even seem to have any friends; he is satisfied just being around people. Yet as much as he rejects the emotional baggage any real relationship requires, he is still a victim of his own humanity and his own inherent need for others – to not be alone. In his job, for example, he flies all over the country for most of the year firing employees at downsizing companies. Ironically, the only thing he seems to relish more than the hubbub of constant travel is his ability to connect to people, to let them down easy. Yes, he may be firing them, but he prides himself by doing it with a certain degree of humanity.
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