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Sunday, February 19, 2012

[6.00/10] Man on a Ledge (2012)


Man on a Ledge (2012)

Brief review: Call it silly, absurd and pointless, but Asger Leth's debut non-doc feature, "Man on a Ledge" is one of those guilty pleasure type of movies, that you can't help but enjoy for all the wrong reasons. It's really weird how something so cliched, unoriginal and contrived can be so perfectly watchable and passably entertaining at the same time, and since this is an almost impossible thing to achieve, the director deserves credit for that. On the other hand, the film's 'high concept' premise is maybe a bit too ambitious for Asger Leth's lack of directing experience and skills, and as a result, aside from a few faced-paced and tautly-shot action sequences, "Man on a Ledge" is hardly impressive on a technical level. Despite its countless weaknesses, though, "Man on a Ledge" is everything but boring. There are some pacing issues in the beginning and the climax is absolutely improbable, not to say ridiculous, but for most part, the film retains a good level of intensity that will keep you intrigued, and even on the edge of your seat in particular scenes. The partially engaging cast also saves this thriller from being completely mediocre. Sam Worthington is a weak lead, and he lacks charisma as usual, but the charming and talented on-screen duo, Jamie Bell and Genesis Rodriguez are both likable, funny and very interesting to watch. Elizabeth Banks and Ed Harris are spot-on in their roles as well.

Overall summary: Contrived, hardly plausible and overly ambitious, yet well-cast, decently-made, and somewhat intriguing, "Man on a Ledge" is totally aware of its own silliness and absurdity, but it still delivers enough thrills, twists and tense moments to grab viewers' attention.

12 comments:

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I wondered if this movie would end up being Worthington's career on a ledge. He's not a great actor - amazing what Cameron was able to pull out of him for Avatar.

Maynard Morrissey said...

My thoughts when I first saw the ledge-trailer:
"wow, a movie called 'man on a ledge'... and surprise, surprise... it's about a man on a ledge! I'm so NOT interested in this" :)

Do you know the 80s Stephen King anthology "CAT'S EYE"? There's a segment about a man on a ledge which is undoubtedly way more awesome than this movie (of course, that's said without having seen MOAL)

Nebular said...

Alex, I don't like him either. He has zero screen presence. That said, he did a great job in Texas Killing Fields. I was so surprised by his performance. As for Man on a Ledge, it's a passable, mindless entertainment, and definitely NOT a career-threatening movie for Sam.

Nebular said...

Maynard, yes the title may be quite silly, but it kinda makes sense, because it has two meanings - a literal one, and a metaphoric one. Got it? I dunno, it's not that bad..it's not bad at all. Give it a shot, I think it may leave you pleasantly surprised.

Matthew Vanacore said...

I remember when I first saw the previews for Ledge Man (which would make a better title). I was pretty underwhelmed. But your review does not excoriate, highlighting some actual, impressive aspects. There seems to be some redeeming quality, so I'll wait for this to hit Netflix before I give it a go.

Great review!

farawayeyes said...

Another rental as it has been here and gone. The trailer didn't look too interesting, but I'll take your word for it. You haven't steered me wrong yet.

Nebular said...

Matty, I wasn't impressed by the previews either. I entered the theater expecting a poor and uninspired thriller, but I ended up being quite entertained. It's not a good film by no means, but it delivers everything it promises.

Nebular said...

farawayeyes, I caught it on its last week in heaters here. I hope it won't leave you disappointed, and I'm extremely glad I haven't steered you yet. :) Thank you for trusting me regarding movie choices.

Craig Edwards said...

I'm with Maynard - I prefer my Man on a Ledge to be Robert Hayes from the Stephen King movie Cat's Eye. (Is anybody here a HUGE fan of this movie? If so, get in touch with me - I have something you might be interested in.)

Digression over - I'm also with Matty - I'll check this one out on my Super TV at some point - the theater run I'll skip.

Solid review, Mr. N!

Nebular said...

Thank you, Craig.

Hey, I'm not insisting that this man on a ledge is better than the one in Cat's Eye, I'. just saying that Leth's film is a solid entertainment, despite its weaknesses. ;)

I'm curious about your super TV, what it is exactly? Mine is a 46" Panasonic Neo Plasma G30 - one of the best out there. :)

Melissa Bradley said...

Interesting review. I have my own guilty pleasure flicks...;) However, Sam Worthington is utterly unwatchable unless there are gods and monsters to take away the pain. Don't think I will watch this unless I have copius amounts of alcohol. LOL

Nebular said...

Mel, I enjoyed it, I won't lie. It was silly at times and ridiculous at other, but very entertaining nonetheless. I was impressed with Sam in Texas Killing Fields - he showed he can act. Here, he was kinda meh. Have a double whiskey and give this film a shot. LOL.