Wednesday, 15 February 2012
Movie #16 Man on a Ledge
"One-a these days, your gonna stick your dick in the wrong door, and somebody's gonna slam it"
That bizarrely hilarious line is the only real highlight of this plodding, by-the-numbers schlocky heist-flick. Sam Worthington (not quite concealing his Aussie gravel) plays the titular ledge-dweller, a man framed for a crime he didn't commit; his brother (Jamie Bell) and brother's girlfriend (the very lovely Genesis Rodriguez) carry out a ludicrous and convoluted diamond heist in the building across the street. The worryingly-wrinkled Ed Harris stalks around in the background adding heft to his few scenes as the villainous mastermind and a variety of actors put in turns as cynical Noo Yawk cops.
OK, so Man on a Ledge is a soft target: it's silly, cliched and a bit dull. It has an oddly early-nineties feel as well, as if it's cheap knock-off of Speed or even Lethal Weapon - but without the excuse of not knowing any better. Many of the actors in this could do better - it's a paycheck, marking time. There are moments when it feels that the plot may be developing in interesting directions, but these are dead ends, as we return again and again to one of the most preposterous screenplays I've come across for years (seriously; it makes Taken look like Glengarry Glen Ross).
It's depressing, really, to think that studios can still get away with turning out this kind of crap when movies like Chronicle prove that accessible multiplex-fodder films can be made cheaper, better and with greater success. But then the grosses for Man on a Ledge are not looking good so far. My advice - don't encourage them, give this a miss.