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A&E, General

Man on a Ledge Review: I Wish You’d Step Back, My Friend…


Rhys Smith, Contributor

 As one can deduce by reading the film’s title, as well as the hackneyed Third Eye Blind reference, Man on a Ledge has something to do with, well, a man threatening to jump off of the edge of a building.  While this remains a theme throughout, the movie takes a sharp turn into the heist/revenge thriller genre. Picture a poor man’s Ethan Hunt and crew trying to prove their innocence from some generic, Wall-Street entrepreneur in the 1%. Regardless, though, Man on a Ledge is definitely entertaining, and a good way to kill 102 minutes.

Nick Cassidy (played by Sam Worthington) is an escaped convict who claims he was framed, and is attempting to prove his innocence from stealing a prized diamond from Wall-Street tycoon David Englander (Ed Harris). Assuming a fake identity, Cassidy climbs out onto a window ledge of the 21st floor of an upscale hotel, distracting the general public by being a depressed “jumper.” Meanwhile, Cassidy has his brother and his brother’s girlfriend break into Englander’s jewelry vault across the street in order to retrieve the “missing” diamond, which would shed light unto his innocence. As sympathetic hostage negotiator Lydia Mercer (Elizabeth Banks) pieces together this story, and when Englander catches wind of Cassidy’s antics, Man on a Ledge pushes viewers onto the (l)edge of their seats.

As stated before, Man on a Ledge is a captivating movie. Sure, the dialogue may be somewhat unoriginal, and the acting leaves much to be desired, but that’s not the point. This is a film that is supposed to transport you to another place, and lets you temporarily forget about your 9-to-5 grind. However, you don’t want to be transported completely outside the realms of possibility; unfortunately, this is where the film runs into problems. Without completely ruining the storyline of the movie, the end of Man on a Ledge turns into a chase. Cassidy is pursuing a fleeing Englander, but falls far behind; all hope seems lost. Refusing to give up on his dream until his last breath, Cassidy jumps off of the high-rise hotel onto a jumbo-sized cushion set up earlier for his potential suicide attempt, and emerges unscathed to continue his pursuit! Not only does Cassidy survive a several hundred-foot fall, but he carries on with his chase completely unharmed.

If I wanted to see a film that I knew was going to be utterly unfeasible, I would have shelled out 13 dollars on something, say, like Journey 2 (yes, I know it’s not out yet). Even though I was still entertained, I was expecting something more believable; not Sam Worthington in the role of a superhero. Honestly, I left the cinema feeling cheated. Call me old fashioned, but if you take a dive off of a 300 hundred odd foot building, you ain’t getting up.à 2.5/5

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