Man on a Ledge's concept is about the same as Bruce Willis's Die Hard. An ex-cop and fugitive (Sam Worthington) stands on the ledge of a high-rise building as negotiator (Elizabeth Banks) tries to convince him not to jump. Secrets are revealed during the process and the police must hurry up to find out what made the man jump to such heights. The plot is intriguing, and Banks along with the protagonist played by Ed Harris (The Rock) acted well. The direction well not as good as Die Hard's John McTiernan is above average. The first half is plastered with flashbacks revealing the background story.
However, the film has many cons. Mainly Worthington is not at all convincing as a man on the ledge of such a high building. He is one of the stone-faced actors of H-town. So it's not surprising he was cast in Terminator: Salvation as a cyborg. Even The Rock is a better actor than him having the ironic stage name. Worthington could be filmed standing on the rooftop of Burj Khalifa without an expression on his face. With such an almost-unique storyline it is depressing that such a followthrough was written. The audience and critics would've expected witty conversations between Banks and Worthington but all we get is wry humour. Action scenes are not worth mentioning to friends and the people watching the scene from the streets seem like wax figures. Where are the gasps? Ironic comments? The direction is a non-thrilling and non-realistic depiction of post-tragedy in New York City. And the motion picture becomes predictable after the first hour of its 102 mins length.
The film is directed by Asger Leth and written by Pablo F. Fenjves whose a TV movie writer this being his 1st feature-length film and it comes as no surprise. He has potential to become great but for the present a mediocre screen-author. It opened at 8th on the US Box Office (Jan 27, 2012) earning a total global gross of just above its $42m budget as deserved. Man on a Ledge is a good thriller and entertaining for a one-time watch. But in the end we realise that this was not worth comparing with Die Hard.
Rotten Tomatoes: 31%.
Box Office 101: 2/4.