Tower Heist, staring Ben Stiller, Edie Murphy and Alan Alda, is an Action, Comedy, Crime genre film taking place in modern day New York.
Josh Kovacs ( Ben Stiller ) is a very devoted building manager for a prestigious apartment complex in New York City. One billionaire resident, Arthur Shaw ( Alan Alda ), is a financier with whom Kovacs is very close to and plays chess with every day electronically. But when Shaw is arrested for fraud, and all of the employee’s money Kovacs had trusted Shaw with is gone, he begins to rethink what kind of a man Shaw really is. When the loss of the employee’s life savings leads to a tragedy, Kovacs realizes what he must do. Putting together a team of not-so-talented former employees, an evicted resident, and down-town thief, Slide ( Edie Murphy ), to rob Shaw of the twenty million dollars the FBI can’t find is a sure fire recipe for comedy.
Or is it? While there were a number of comical scenes in the film, they were mostly stupid comedy. You know witty comedy? The kind that shows class and style. This film has little of that. Stupid comedy, although it is ranking pretty high in today’s society, is not my idea of good comedy. In one scene two main stars are arguing about when they were in day care together as kids. While there is comedy in that idea, I don’t think it was well played out in their dialog. I will admit that Ben Stiller, in this film, has his moments of great wit. However, they are very few, and stupid comedy reigns supreme.
The key to a great story is passion. You NEED to feel passionate about the characters. You NEED to want what they want. You NEED to feel what they feel. In Tower Heist I didn’t. Not in the slightest. The characters are on screen, doing their thing, and that’s it. You never feel very passionate about them. Now, I can’t say that about the door man, Lester ( Stephen Henderson ), he is a character you like from the beginning. But the main characters, nothing. And that’s what the movie is about, the MAIN characters.
Realism. That’s something Hollywood has never been very good at doing. And that is very noticeable in this film. However, unlike most films where the unrealistic parts are to give the audience a larger explosion, or to better show a point in the story, in Tower Heist the unrealistic parts were only to help the script writer. They didn’t give the audience anything great. I don’t know when it became possible for a man to stand a multi-ton car on it’s front while catching a dog, but in Tower Heist, it’s done.
All in all, I cannot rate this movie very high. I’m sure others will disagree with me, and I’m sure that’s all just a matter of taste. So, having said that, if you are a fan of stupid comedy films, and don’t care to care, then Tower Heist is a film to put on your list. However, if a movie for you is about passion, story and wit, I would recommend looking elsewhere.