Friday, June 1, 2012

Man on a Ledge

In a world... where you do something to prove you didn't do it, Sam Worthington will fail yet again to lead a really good movie after Avatar. He must be getting desperate; he spends half of this one threatening suicide. "LIKE MY MOVIES OR ELSE!!"

Not that it's his fault that Man on a Ledge skipped on common sense while assembling it's plot. A plot that casts Worthington as NY cop Nick Cassidy who is accused of stealing a huge diamond, and sent to prison. With a little help, he escapes, climbs out a hotel window, and demands to see Lydia Mercer (Elizabeth Banks) a police negotiator, all to prove his innocence. How does that work? Well Nick is just being a distraction. His brother Joey (the amazing Jamie Bell) and Joey's girl Angie (Genesis Rodriguez) are doing the heavy lifting, across the street, on a mission to find the diamond right where it belongs, and really steal it. Thus proving that our bad guy David Englander (Ed Harris of course!) framed Nick for the insurance money. How can they prove Englander had it before, if they have it now? I don't know, don't bother me with tedious details!

Now, like I said, it's not really Worthington's fault this movie doesn't work. He's just as convincing --or, unconvincing, as the case may be-- as everyone else. Even the for-sure actors like Bell and Harris have characters that are plagued by the script and directing, rendering them less than par. Alone, all the aspects either fizzle, or totally crash and burn, but added together, the miraculously make a movie worth watching if you were to go about it right, by realizing, and accepting the ridiculousness in all it's glory. With all it failings, I found it enjoyable, if mostly in a it's-so-bad-it's-good sort of way. I even had fun listening for when Worthington's natural Aussie accent would sneak through his "American" one. And did you know it was all actually filmed on a NY high-rise? Just thinking about that made me nervous. The intense thrill of being so high and possibly falling may be one thing done right... perhaps just by comparison.

If you think about the plot and it's numerous holes much more than your average mindless drone, you risk watching the movie shrivel into a senseless puddle around your feet. So don't think about it. Lower your expectations, and just enjoy the thrill of the action, and whatever else you can salvage from the wreckage. Man on a Ledge may be a mess, and absolutely ridiculous, but somehow, it manages to be fun, and that, in a pinch, makes it a ridiculously fun mess.
-3 and a half/5 stars

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