GENRE: New Yawk caper flick
THE PITCH: Disgraced cop turned convict Nick Cassidy (Sam Worthington) threatens to leap from the ledge of a high-rise Manhattan hotel. Is he really suicidal, or is he part of a complicated heist to clear his good name?
MONEY SHOTS: Nick makes a daring escape from his father's funeral in a car that gets clipped by a train. A news helicopter flies too close and nearly blows Nick off the ledge. Nick's brother Joey (Jamie Bell) and his improbably gorgeous girlfriend Angie (Génesis Rodríguez) sneak into a building's vent system a millisecond before getting caught. When a SWAT guy repels down the roof to catch Nick, our hero grabs him in a bear hug and swings with him over the street.
WORST LINE: "Today's the day that everything changes — one way or another." It's like Man on a Ledge is a TV series and it's hyping the season finale.
SUBTLEST JOKE: As a TV reporter on the scene, Kyra Sedgwick pronounces her name "Suzie Morales" with an amusingly thick Latino accent, even though she seems totally Caucasian.
BODY COUNT: For a contemporary crime thriller, surprisingly low. The ending features a couple of fatal gunshots, but Man on a Ledge admirably restrains itself from gratuitous violence.
FASHION STATEMENT: Nick is forced to wear an orange jumpsuit at his father's funeral. Angie's dangly hoop earrings seem suspiciously inappropriate for a hang-from-the-ceiling kind of caper. Sinister Cop Dante Marcus ("Lost's" man in black, Titus Welliver) wears a turtleneck that makes him look almost giraffe-like.
FLESH FACTOR: Angie reveals pink underwear when she puts on a skin-tight wet suit for cat burglary. Good cop Lydia Mercer (Elizabeth Banks) rolls out of bed in tank-top and shorts.
POLITICAL SUBTEXT: Rick claims to have been framed by an evil businessman (Ed Harris), and the onlookers below hail him as a symbol of a regular person challenging the wealthy. You expect to hear a reporter exclaim that the hashtag "OccupyLedge" is trending.
HEY, WAIT A MINUTE: Nick takes pains to wipe his fingerprints in the hotel room, but opens the window sill barehanded. Also, do crowds really yell "Jump! Jump!" at would-be suicides, or is that just a movie thing?
THE BOTTOM LINE: Like Worthington struggling with his American accent, Man on a Ledge tries to impersonate earlier, better New York caper flicks like Dog Day Afternoon and Inside Man. Danish director Asger Leth builds suspense in the heist scenes, but doesn't capture the Big Apple's colorful character, so everything feels overcooked and slightly phony. It ends on a satisfying note, but Man on a Ledge won't put on the edge of your seat.
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