For a movie titled Man on a Ledge, how much can ultimately be expected? When I saw the trailer, I rolled my eyes and passed it off, rattling off expected plot points in my head. I mean, seriously, an entire movie about why some guy is about to jump off a building? I was not intrigued in the slightest; however, after being given the opportunity to see it on a night when all I had planned was watching reruns in my flannel pajamas, I figured that at least I could give it a try. While it didn’t wow me by any means, I thought that Man on a Ledge was successful in many aspects, especially in building a plot that was more intricate than anticipated.
The plot revolves around ex-cop Nick Cassidy (Sam Worthington) attempting to persuade police negotiator Lydia Mercer (Elizabeth Banks) that his conviction of the theft of real estate mogul David Englander’s (Ed Harris) priceless diamond was unjust, and that not only is he innocent of any crime, but Englander himself still has the diamond in his possession.
Unbeknownst to the police task force or the massive crowd that has gathered on the streets below, Cassidy’s accomplices are working to prove to the world that he is innocent by stealing the diamond from Englander’s private vault.
For the most part, the plot works; especially with additional background given on the characters as the movie progresses, allowing things to fall neatly into place. What doesn’t work is several unnecessary cuts at the beginning, an odd sequence of events leading up to the meat of the plot, and the constant accent slips from Aussie Sam Worthington, which became more frequent and more distracting as the movie went on.
Still, much of this was counterbalanced by the supporting cast, varying from the amusing antics of reporter Suzie Morales (Kyra Sedgwick) to the positively spot-on casting choice for Ed Harris as the sinister David Englander. Additionally, Cassidy’s accomplices, his brother Joey (Jamie Bell) and brother’s girlfriend (Genesis Rodriguez), provide some surprisingly well-delivered comic relief with their constant banter.
While I can say with certainty that this is not the best action movie I have ever seen, it certainly exceeded my expectations for what could have been a definite stinker. From the casting choices to the better than anticipated plot, Man on a Ledge delivers a reasonably decent movie-going experience.
Man on a Ledge – 7/10