'Man on a Ledge' review: Harmlessly dumb--really, really dumb

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*1/2 (out of four)

The time has come for Hollywood and Sam Worthington to shake hands, exchange pleasantries and go their separate ways.

In “Terminator Salvation,” “Avatar,” “Clash of the Titans,” “The Debt” and the new thriller “Man on a Ledge,” Worthington has had ample time to prove his big-screen charisma. No dice. This guy isn’t terrible, just bland. He brings as much to the table as Oliver Twist.

In “Ledge,” Worthington plays … oh, who cares what his name is. He’s the guy on the ledge, an ex-cop who’s there because of a 25-year prison sentence he claims he doesn’t deserve. Meanwhile, his brother Joey (Jamie Bell) and Joey’s girlfriend (Genesis Rodriguez) work on a heist that could clear up this whole misunderstanding.

With the exception of Rodriguez—who was clearly hired after her bra and fills the apparel just fine—almost everyone in “Ledge” is miscast, including Anthony Mackie as Worthington’s ex partner and Elizabeth Banks as a negotiator nursing a bad hangover (is there any other kind?).

The script by veteran TV writer Pablo F. Fenjves (whose past work includes titles like “When the Dark Man Calls” and “Bloodhounds II”) flavors “Ledge” with bits of “The Negotiator” and “The Fugitive” to ensure that absolutely every moment is as predictable as possible.

Between lines like “He’s got nothing to lose” and “You’re gonna wanna take a look at this,” “Ledge” bides a lot of time, but not enough to avoid feeling like the generic version of something that still needs to be 50 percent less stupid to have a chance.

Watch Matt on “You & Me This Morning,” Fridays at 7:30 a.m. on WCIU, the U

mpais@tribune.com. @mattpais

 

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