I love this montage of press junkets put together by filmmaker Jason Reitman during his Up In The Air interview rounds. The fun, punchy style of the piece is in stark contrast to the dreary, true nature of junkets.
Having interviewed a few people during TIFF, you do feel as though you’re one in a long assembly-line of reporters armed with microphones, recorders, and the standard line of questioning. More than once, I’ve actually felt bad for the interview subject -if only because they spend their days answering the same, inane questions. Time must surely stop at such moments. I can only imagine how many times Reitman was asked “what was it like to work with George Clooney?” It’s easy to forget, amidst the hype, that there is a real human being sitting in front of you. That person has real thoughts, feelings, ideas and perceptions.
It’s nice to see Reitman thinks the same of journalists; there’s a curiosity about these people, inherent in the fast edits of this clip, that they have lives, too, and those lives aren’t always strictly defined by livelihood. The Joe Strummer soundtrack also hints at a punk ethos that doesn’t quite gel with the promotional duties outlined by Hollywood, that leaving the human out of such marketing-based interaction robs one of experiencing the true joy of the moment. It’s also neat to see Reitman using social media with such flair and creativity; maybe it’s a sign of his (our) generation that we understand its deep ability to share and connect in ways that weren’t possible years ago. I wonder what directors like Frank Capra or Alfred Hitchcock would do, would that they had today’s technological tools at their disposal. It’s too easy to forget the humans amidst machines -that there’s a real person on the other side of the microphone, the tweet, the status update. Reitman’s junket montage, with its myriad of faces and smiles, is a wonderful reminder of the power of connection in today’s techno-obsessed world.