Ryan Bingham works for a company that helps and facilitates companies’ firing some of their worker. He and his colleagues make business trips all over the U.S and do their, in other words, they fire people. Ryan thinks that his job’s best side is to fly. He aims to save his frequent flyer miles until they reach one million miles and get the club card for his loyalty to the airlines. He also makes seminars for, with his words “awaking” people .He leads people to leave whatever been problem for them. He points out this situation with the example “backpack”. Ryan asks people to fill and empty the backpacks of their own life as metaphor and wants them to realize how much the problems are heavy. He even thinks about putting people that are one’s around in this backpack if they keep him/her in back or slow him/her down.
For that reason most probably, he is not close to his siblings. Ryan’s life changes when the company hires Natalie who offers that instead of business trips for firing people face to face, to make remote computer access. But Ryan thinks that Natalie does not fully understand the nature of the business. For him it is kind of way of life and he does not want to lose his current life style The company’s owner Craig suggests Natalie to accompany Ryan on a business trip. In these trip Ryan meets a woman called Alex and because that their lives are almost the same they are getting along with each other.
Alex also travels often and whenever their flight schedules matches they meet. After he tries to show her to difficulties of firing people, Natalie overcomes the difficulties and achieves firing people via remote computer access. Then the company initiates the remote computer access firing system in trail version and calls Ryan back to home like others. Ryan comes back to home and realize how much he is far away from the family. But he finally does something to heal the wounds…
American Dream shaped with the ideas of freedom , equality for all , social mobility and opportunities for achievement and success with hard work. The movie points out the American Dream with the character Ryan. The story of movie puts the individualism on the Ryan character and makes him “ man of freedom “ for his entire life . He likes travelling and being alone. He even leads people, in his seminars , to get rid of from their “weights” in their backpacks. He works too much to achieve his goal and this touches to the one the values of the dream too.
Even the movie starts with comic issues which attracts us to story with Ryan’s telling his life story , it can be defined as tragicomedy because of family issues and Ryan’s disappointment towards the end of the movie.
Backpack metaphor combined with the life’s weights metaphor shows that people have some barriers which slow down and stop them . The main character Ryan as a speaker wants the people to realize how these weighs are heavy and that’s why puts all these weights in a backpack. Because it is easy for us to remember to carry something with backpack is hard , imagination on that metaphor becomes much more easier. Personally , I don’t admit the hero’s backpack philosophy , because we have people who can help us for these “weights” , it is just about whether you want to be alone or not ? if you want to be alone all these stuffs in your life becomes “ weight” for you. But if you don’t you can always can find some ones asking you for help.
Having a patriarchal cultural background, US have gender roles dominated by man. In the movie characters have strong manners for these roles. Ryan does not give importance to set a family and his behaviors to women show his domination feeling against to women. Alex figure describes Ryan as “escape”. It is possibly an escape from ordinary mother figure life to free women figure. So it touches to women’s position in the society and reaction to it.
IMDb ( for critics and soundtracks)
Wikipedia ( for the values of ‘American Dream’ )
http://ezinearticles.com ( for understanding and reviewing ‘American Identity’ )
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