I know this movie came out like… I dunno, months ago, but I think it’d be fine to post it now. This is Man on a Ledge.
Nick Cassidy (played by Sam Worthington) is an ex-cop arrested for stealing a $40 million diamond from a businessman named Englander (played by Ed Harris), but soon finds himself on a ledge apparently about to commit suicide. Turns out he’s faking it as a part of a plan to prove his innocence. He has the help of a young couple: his younger brother Joey (played by Jamie Bell) and his girlfriend Angie (played by Genesis Rodriguez) who go inside a building to find the diamond to show that Englander framed Nick for the crime. Part of the police force, there’s Lydia (played by Elizabeth Banks) a negotiator who tries to talk Nick out of jumping.
Before I get to the film itself, I’ll get to the cast and their performances first, because there are a few stuff I’d like to bring it up. The cast is quite decent. I do like Ed Harris, I did kinda like Sam Worthington in Avatar, we get to see the beautiful Elizabeth Banks out of her Hunger Games get-up, and the reason why I saw this movie in the first place… Jamie Bell.
I have such a huge crush on this guy!!! That’s also the reason why I saw Jumper in the first place (yes, it wasn’t a really good movie, but Jamie Bell and the action scenes were the only good things there), and I just adored him in Tintin. MAN did he make a perfect Tintin!!! But I digress.
The only one I didn’t recognise in the main cast was Genesis Rodriguez. Honestly, I think she was just added there because she’s pretty. She’s not a bad actress, but she really didn’t stand out. They could have added any other attractive actress there, for all I cared, and it wouldn’t have made a difference. Actually, they could have removed the character entirely and it wouldn’t have made a difference, but I’ll get to that later.
Something that caught my attention when I saw Sam Worthington act… his accent. If you saw him in Avatar, you wouldn’t know that he actually has an Australian accent in real life. But in Man on a Ledge his accent slips especially when he’s shouting out his lines! I look back at scenes from Avatar, and we almost can’t tell that he’s faking any accent, but here you can easily tell. I don’t get it: why could he pull off the accent just fine in Avatar, but not in Man on a Ledge? Another one with a little accent problem is the charming, awesome and amazing Jamie Bell. Even though I absolutely love Jamie Bell… I’m sorry, but even though he gets the accent right once in a while, he also slips into his normal English accent (he actually pulls it off ok his performance in Green Day’s music video “Wake Me Up When September Ends”. Isn’t that odd?). I don’t know if it’s because I’m used to his voice and the way he speaks, but the problem’s still there and a bit distracting. Sam Worthington and Jamie Bell would work good in this kind of film because they’re very physical in their performances, but why didn’t the film just get actors who were as physical as them, but with an American accent?
Even though Man on a Ledge has a good cast, their weren’t really anything outstanding or anything truly memorable. I was hoping to see something out of Ed Harris, but here he didn’t really do anything. That’s such a shame, because he’s a fantastic actor and he’s very talented.
Elizabeth Banks’ performance was ok, but it’s not like in The Hunger Games where she really shone. “THAT IS MAHOGANY!” Geesh, that line really did become popular, don’t ya think?
Anyway, if there is anything that I can really compliment was the interaction between the young couple Joey and Angie. Even though Genesis Rodriguez didn’t do much for me, I liked her line deliveries with Jamie Bell. They talked to each other kinda like a real couple: throwing funny banters at each other, but still truly care for each other.
What I didn’t buy the fact that they’re marriage material. I sorta bought them as a couple, but when Joey proposes to Angie in the end (oh yeah, SPOILERS. Sorry about that), I really didn’t see them as marriage material, and on top of that… as I was watching the movie, I was thinking to myself, “So what? Who cares? What does this whole romantic relationship subplot have to do with the film? You could have made them siblings and it wouldn’t have changed a thing in the film.” The subplot of the couple doesn’t really lead anywhere, they don’t go through any real challenge or story other than the fact that they’re trying to steal a diamond, and it really didn’t add anything or tie in to the main plot. And then we get to the main problem of the film.
We have a guy pretending to jump off a building, which really just serves AS A DISTRACTION for the couple to steal the diamond. The whole man on a ledge thing doesn’t do anything. It’s not even a plot, it’s a distraction, so why make it the focus of the entire freaking film? And Nick doesn’t even seem to change at all. Why not make him realise something? Not necessarily learn a lesson, but have his perspective of something change, or make him go through an interesting challenge. Why not just make the whole film about the heist? A combination of The Fugitive and a regular heist film: a guy who wants to prove his innocence, so he has to steal a diamond to prove that another guy really has it. Also make the character have an arc: overcome something, maybe psychological, that is connected to the main plot and themes of the film. OH WAIT! They did that. A small movie I like to call Inception! Also, the characters in this film aren’t really characters. They’re just devices for the film to go somewhere. They have some motivation and a bit of personality, but not anything that’s interesting, that does anything for the film or makes them go through anything.
Again, to remind you, I didn’t hate the film. Could it have been something more? Not really. There was no real story here and not much to work with. The whole plot is generic thriller material and it makes the story silly and predictable. There was little to no substance, and it was just characters doing stuff. At least the action was ok, but not anything spectacular, and again I did like the silly banter between the couple (as well as other funny moments once in a while), but that didn’t help the film as a whole. I really wouldn’t watch this movie again, not because it’s dreadful, but because it’s just doesn’t stick with me, and that’s a bad thing for any film. If a film can’t make you want to watch it again, then it did something wrong. There are no messages or characters that stick to anyone after they finish the film, and when they try to think about the plot, they just think of the word “thriller”. The whole “man on a ledge” was just there to add tension, but really was just pointless and didn’t add any real story or character arcs, and seeing how predictable the plot is, there’s no suspense or mystery to the story. Critics keep saying that the story is outrageous, which might be true for the story itself, but the best way I can describe this film as a whole is this: It’s just a movie that was made. Nothing else. I won’t tell anybody to avoid this film, but I wouldn’t recommend this film either, unless you have a crush on Jamie Bell and you just wanna see him on screen. MAN, is this guy cute!
But even that wouldn’t allow me to watch the film again. If I wanna watch Jamie Bell, I got films like Billy Elliot. So with all that said, Man on a Ledge is just a film. That’s it. The end.