Tower Heist (2011)

Written by Adrian Lim

This a movie that feels like Ocean’s 11 but is not quite up to the stylized version of the film.

Here, Alan Alda (MASH) is at his creepily dislikable best as a rich Wall Street figure whose lowliest employees seek revenge after he has swindled them out of their pensions and life savings. He is of course Bernie Maddoff who took away millions from investors.

The movie takes half an hour to get going, showing us the workings of the rich in a rich town in a rich building. So when Alan Alda gets arrested and is found to have swindled money from the workers in the building, Stiller decides on a heist of the fraudster’s hidden cash which coincides with Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade in New York. It should have been fun but its rather less fun than it might have been due to some poor timing.

At parts it suffers from imagination and script. Some plot points you can see a mile away (damn you film school) but most importantly, this film should have gone through the roof with a stellar cast of Alan Alda, Ben Stiller, Eddie Murphy, Mathew Broderick (Ferris Bueller’s day off), Judd Hirsch (Taxi)  and Casey Affleck. Tea Leoni makes a small cameo as an FBI agent (irony, her former husband David Duchovny was from x-files)

The crime’s mastermind, Ben Stiller, is much funnier than the professional crook (Eddie Murphy) he hires to assist, which is strange and the writing for Eddie’s jokes were …emm…FLAT.

Brett Ratner who directed this must have been frustrated at the outcome that his anti-gay burst recently cost him and Eddie Murphy the oscar’s gig. So much for the guy who brought us the more entertaining RUSH HOUR and oh…Chris Tucker is more funny than Eddie Murphy.

Maybe he should have been in this film too.

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