28 mar. 2012

My Review: Tower Heist (6/10)

¨A robbery can change very quickly. You have to adapt to the situation at any moment. Anything can happen.¨

Tower Heist is the latest Brett Ratner vehicle, and it isn’t as good as the film that made him popular, Rush Hour, but it still has it`s funny moments thanks to Eddie Murphy and Ben Stiller`s performance. I`m barely giving this a fresh rating because I was entertained, but by no means is it memorable and I can understand if many people found this movie stupid because the robbery is beyond ridiculous, but I guess that is alright because they never try to take things seriously. Ratner continues to remind us that he`s just having fun with this film and he can go overboard with the plot if he wants to. The entertaining moments come from the classic Eddie Murphy lines and Ben Stiller always playing his usual self. People who enjoy his comedy will like this movie, but those who don’t like him won`t like this either because it`s your typical Ben Stiller comedy. I just went along with the robbery scene and decided to have fun with it knowing it wasn`t trying to take itself seriously. Screenwriter, Jeff Nathanson, could have used some of the knowledge he gained when adapting the script for Ocean`s Eleven, but I guess it wasn’t that important for him. They focused on the jokes and that was enough for me. The action is ridiculous, but the comedy is present so I had a decent time with Tower Heist.

As for the story goes we are introduced to the main character right away, Josh Kovacs (Ben Stiller), who works as the manager of the Tower, which has the most expensive residential apartments in New York City. He is really dedicated to his job and is dedicated to keeping its residents happy, including wealthy financier Arthur Shaw (Alan Alda) who even manages his and the rest of the employees pensions. Charlie (Casey Affleck) is Josh`s brother in law and he also works at the Tower despite being a terrible worker under his high standards. Some of the other staff members are Lester (Stephen Henderson), Enrique (Michael Peña), Odessa (Gabourey Sidibe from Precious), and Miss Iovenko (Nina Arianda). Together they seem to have everything pretty much in control, but one day the FBI comes to arrest Mr. Shaw for financial fraud and Agent Denham (Tea Leoni) makes the arrest. Shaw pays bail and undergoes house arrest until court date. Lester tries to commit suicide when he hears about Mr. Shaw. When Josh finds out that Lester had given Shaw his entire retirement savings to invest on, he snaps and storms Shaw`s apartment in search for answers. Josh loses his temper and is fired from his job along with Charlie and Enrique who were with him at the moment. The three, along with a former tenant who was evicted from the apartment, Mr. Fitzhugh (Matthew Broderick), and a thief named Slide (Eddie Murphy) decide to commit the perfect crime: steal the 20 million Shaw has hiding in his apartment and give back the money he has stolen to the rest of the apartment staff.

There isn’t really much more I can say about this movie. I liked it enough to give it a fresh grade, but I wouldn’t be recommending it or watching it again. This is no Rush Hour, it doesn’t have that many funny moments, but it still managed to keep me watching it with a smile in my face. I am a Ben Stiller fan so that might be one reason I actually enjoyed this movie because it really doesn’t have many other positive things going for it. Eddie Murphy is funny in this, but he doesn’t have many scenes. Casey Affleck is far from the roles he got back in 2007 with Gone Baby Gone and The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, but he`s still a likeable character. Sidibe proved she can also do comedy, and not just dramas. She does have some funny scenes. I also enjoyed Broderick`s performance quite a bit. The cast in this film is really interesting and Ratner has done some good work in the past so I can see why I was entertained with this film despite the plot and the material. It is a decent film with some funny moments and a good way to spend a boring evening at the house, but don’t go expecting much more than that. It`s not a buddy comedy either so don’t go expecting a lot of scenes between Murphy and Stiller because there really aren`t that many.

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