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'Man on a Ledge' Movie Review

About.com Rating 2.5 Star Rating

By

Elizabeth Banks and Sam Worthington in Man on a Ledge

Elizabeth Banks and Sam Worthington in Man on a Ledge

© Summit Entertainment
So many questions, so few answers... Man on a Ledge asks that we relax our grip on reality and put aside all logic as we step out onto a ledge next to Sam Worthington in this action dramedy. If you can, in fact, not worry about the whys, hows, whats, and wheres of the plot, then Man on a Ledge is actually sort of fun. It has the benefit of strong performances, a cast determined to power through no matter what they're given to say or do, and a premise that plays upon the universal desire to have wrongs righted and evil guys pay for their dastardly deeds.
So what if the steps taken to prove someone's innocence actually, when you get right down to it, don't prove a thing? If you enjoy action films with characters who don't seem to be taking their predicaments too seriously and you love looking at a pretty woman in tight leather who is both tough and sexy, then you probably won't care that the entire set-up of wanting to steal a diamond that was never stolen in the first place to prove you didn't steal it...well...doesn't really add up. If the ultimate goal is to hold the diamond in your hand to prove you didn't take it, doesn't logic dictate that if you have the diamond in your hand now, it's quite possible you had it in your hand all along?

In Man on a Ledge, Sam Worthington (Avatar, Clash of the Titans) plays a New York cop named Nick Cassidy who takes a job moonlighting as a security guard for a ruthless real estate tycoon (Ed Harris). One thing leads to another, with the businessman setting up the cop to take the fall for a missing $40 million diamond and the cop heading off to spend years in jail for a crime he didn't commit. A one-day pass from jail to go to his father's funeral leads to an escape from custody which ultimately leads to time spent out on a ledge talking to the pretty Detective Lydia Mercer (played by Elizabeth Banks), a negotiator he specifically requests.

Meanwhile, there's something going down across the street at the high-rise building owned by the evil tycoon. But because Nick's got the cops and all the citizens on the streets busy taking bets on when he'll jump, they're sidetracked and don't notice Nick's brother (Jamie Bell) and his foxy girlfriend (Genesis Rodriguez) trying to break into a nearly impenetrable vault in a nearby building.

As Nick tries to convince Lydia Mercer of his innocence, some crooked cops work to make sure Nick either takes a dive off the building or is otherwise silenced before he can spill the beans on what really went down.

The Bottom Line:

There are a few really suspenseful scenes in Man on a Ledge, and the banter between Jamie Bell and Genesis Rodriguez is not only cute but entertaining. The actual plot is ludicrous, as are the stunts, but the execution of it all is fun enough to watch. Even as the implausibility factor rises with each passing minute, Man on a Ledge manages to somehow, someway, not completely turn the audience off. Part of it's due to the charismatic cast and part of it's just due to the fact the film in no way seems to be taking itself seriously, allowing us to just enjoy it for the absolute silliness that it is.

GRADE: C

Man on a Ledge was directed by Asger Leth and is rated PG-13 for violence and brief strong language.

Theatrical Release: January 27, 2012

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