FILM REVIEW: Tower Heist

Who can resist Zoolander, Axel F and Ferris Bueller in the same film?

On the surface this film looks like a comedy with the afore mentioned cast but has director, Brett Ratner, of the Rush Hour series and X-Men: The Final Stand created a heist movie that steals the show?

Alan Alda, on fine form, is the rich man living in the penthouse of the Tower staffed by various members of the cast when one day it seems that all the money that the staff entrusted Alda’s Arthur Shaw to invest is gone. Shaw is then arrested by the FBI for fraud. Things look desperate for the staff or victims and some of them decide the best way to get their money back is to rob it from Shaw. Ben Stiller’s Josh Kovacs is looked upon as the leader of the team and is fired for his troubles.

They know the hotel better than anyone but they are not thieves so enter Eddie Murphy’s Slide to teach them in the ways of criminality.

Along the way they start to round up various team members including down on his luck investment banker Mr. Fitzhugh played by a rather sad looking Matthew Broderick and also Casey Affleck as an expectant father to be.

Can the gang pull off the heist and escape the clutches of the FBI agent Claire Denham played by a determined yet sassy Téa Leoni and get people their money back?

I am not sure this film knows what it is trying to be, a comedy, a crime drama, homage to Woody Allen, a fun caper or all of the above and this is where it gets difficult to enjoy. Are we supposed to know when it is OK to laugh and when to not take it too seriously because at times I was not sure?

The cast of this film seems like eclectic bunch for an interesting type of movie. Most heist movies either have a cast of hard men or smooth criminals this has neither. The aim is to show you how normal people would attempt this.

Eddie Murphy is trying to channel his Trading Places character.  In this film he is good but not great and it seems a shame because it is as if he is trying to hard to be that man. What happened to the more subtle Murphy we use to know, but still a better performance from all his recent films.

Stiller is on good form here and does a credible job of leader of the group and also mastermind of the whole thing. Broderick seems a bit wasted but still fun to watch, I just wished there was more for his character to work with. Rounding out the rest of the cast are Michael Pena and a very underused Judd Hirsch.

Overall, a movie which crosses genres to deliver a pleasing and enjoyable heist movie. OUT NOW!

Rating: 3/5
SOURCE: Facebook page
GS Reporter: Montoya

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