I went into Man on a Ledge with somewhat low expectations. Sorry, but Sam Worthington and Elizabeth Banks were not enough to convince me that a January release would be good. Luckily for me, this meant expecting very little (I don’t have TV service, so I didn’t have trailers shoved down my throat either) beyond what I thought would be some sort of Phone Booth half sequel). The story revolves around an ex cop (Nick Cassidy) who goes down for robbery, but maintains his innocence the entire time. He is facing a good bit of jail time, and needs to get his point across and have enough people take notice. He requests a female negotiator played by Elizabeth Banks who has had a rough couple of weeks since a failed suicide negotiation.
Did the trailer voice over ever say he was a man with nothing left to lose? I really hope so.
I love the cast in this. You may not know the faces (beyond the two leads), but you recognize everybody. Also, holy crap does Ed Harris just not look right. Is he sick or something? Just seems a little too skinny. The actor that played Joey Cassidy wasn’t bad, but I wonder how a Ben Foster, Josh Stewart, or even Cole Hauser would have done in that role. My biggest problem with the entire thing is that instead of going with the straight up New York/Tri state accent, Sam Worthington goes somewhere between his own natural accent and the New Yorker. In general I like it (because accents rule), but when the guy playing your brother doesn’t have that accent, why do you?
There were a lot of plot holes and leaps in logic, whether they happened to be lucky guesses or just a poorly done story/script. A lot of time was unaccounted for as well. There is constant referencing of “just like we practiced”, but when the hell could they practice when the guy has been incarcerated for the entire time they could have practiced?
One of those said “leaps” in action.
Predictability, I’m a wrestling fan so I’m used to being able to predict what’s going to happen and enjoy actually seeing it happen or being surprised by what actually happens. I mean, who doesn’t like guessing correctly? Man on a Ledge suffers a lot from being VERY predictable every step of the way. It is such an obvious movie, but combined with the score and cinematography it should be able to catch you for even the briefest of moments, and take you on a fun ride.
“Sam, you weren’t supposed to actually jump! Terminator: Salvation wasn’t that bad!”
I really enjoyed the climatic ending. You KNEW everything that was going to happen, but that didn’t make it any less fun for me. Maybe it was the fact that I went in expecting nothing, and came out heart pumping with a smile on my face. In that moment the thriller had succeeded. I waited until almost noon on Saturday to write the review to let my mind calm down as opposed to giving it a freaking toast. After having watched Limitless a few nights ago on Netflix instant, these movies could be cousins. Fun rides, some good suspense, and a main character you are constantly cheering for, along with bad guys who you want to see go down. And damn it, you get excited when it happens. Give Man on a Ledge 3-4 months and it will be sitting right next to Limitless on Netflix instant’s menu.
Bonus Drinking Game
Take a Shot: every time you correctly predict what will happen
Take a Shot: for every time you incorrectly predict what will happen
Take a Drink: for every time you sense lazy writing in the explanation or use of something (ex: the use of the bomb specs)
Take a Drink: in the hopes that this movie is Genesis Rodriguez’s coming out party.