Movie Review: Man on a Ledge

The film stars Sam Worthington (Avatar, Clash of the Titans) as former cop Nick Cassidy, who is out to clear his name with help from his brother Joey (played by Jamie Bell) and girlfriend Angie (Genesis Rodriguez).  He places himself on a ledge and requests to have Lydia Mercer (played by Elizabeth Banks), a police negotiator, work to talk him back in.  This only serves as a distraction full of police and onlookers, so that the heist being carried out at the same time may prove successful.  The target of this ambitious plan is realistic and jewelry mogul David Englander (portrayed by a wonderfully evil Ed Harris) is behind it all.  In the end, Man on a Ledge is about how far one man (and the people who love him) will go to clear his name, by any means necessary.

This film is full of fun supporting roles by several well-known actors. Edward Burns, Kyra Sedgwick, William Sadler, and Anthony Mackie all play smaller, but key roles in this film.  This movie does carry a certain measure of action, but is more about the history that each character has with each other, and how all the pieces truly come together in the end.  Throughout the film it is easy to see that the actors enjoyed themselves and put in good effort in their performances.  Each of the characters is flawed in their own way which gives the film a realistic feel that reaches beyond the content of the story itself.  This may be Elizabeth Banks’ best performance to date.  Her portrayal of the a police negotiator who is famous for all the wrong reasons among both the general public and her fellow police officers is pitch perfect.  From the second we see her getting the call to come into work, while nursing a serious hangover, we understand who this person is, and how she may feel.  She is bright, but like many, has lost confidence in her abilities.  The character of Nick Cassidy has to talk this damaged character off of her personal ledge, so to speak, in order for his own plan of redemption to succeed.

Man on a Ledge is all around, a great deal of fun even though it dragged slightly in the middle act.  It wasn’t difficult to follow and one of the big twists is telegraphed heavily.  This takes nothing away from a movie that has many positive parts and strong performances throughout.  The film isn’t overly serious and much like any good movie involving family members has some solid banter between characters.  I truly enjoyed this movie for what it was; a better than average movie, that most anybody will be able to follow and enjoy, and a nice piece of entertainment.  The heist itself doesn’t offer anything new in terms of effects of approach, but this isn’t a negative on the movie itself.  I never felt like the movie was dumbed down, but rather just simplistic in its approach and comfortable with what it wants to be.

Man on a Ledge gets 3 smoking hot Genesis Rodriguez!! out of 5

by Chris Murr

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