If it's crap ... We'll tell you
Yep, because I'll be dammed if I'm going to spend considerable time telling you all why this is a bad film. The warning signs are clear to see from the case cover, but no doubt there will be some out there asking "just how bad is it??” Well, I'll sum it up for you as best as I can.
So, this is the 2011 movie starring Eddie Murphy and Ben Stiller, and directed by Brett Ratner. It follows Stiller's character primarily, who is the manager of a high-end residential block in New York City. He oversees all the staff to make sure every need of the residents is met and seen through. However, a wealthy tenant (played by Alan Alda) is arrested one day by the FBI and is accused of major fraud, which included the pension fun of all the staff at the Tower. Stiller's character believes that they can get the money back and there has been some misunderstanding, but the FBI are adamant that their information is correct, and they will never get their money back.
Infuriated by this, and after losing his job from an altercation with the businessman, he hatches a plan to steal a significant amount of money that he knows is hidden within the businessman's apartment. He builds a team from some of his co-staff that were also fired in the aftermath, but none has any experience in robbery. So, he brings in Eddie Murphy's character, a petty street thug, who will aid them in bringing the plot together. In a classic heist-themed style, they create an elaborate plan to break back into the high-security, high-rise building, find and steal the wealth, and make it out safely.
So far, it must be looking very typical to you, a story you've seen many times before no doubt. Sadly though, pretty much everything in this film is built like a Jenga tower, with huge gaps everywhere that threaten to send the whole thing crashing to the ground. There is no believability to the story at all; it just jumps from one sequence to the next, with very little continuity to speak of, nor any character development to glue it all together. Ben Stiller may be far tamer than his recent roles, but he has very little charisma, and his jokes are still awfully diluted. As for Eddie Murphy, he's playing the style we've seen many times in the past, and in some points, it does come across as comical. But there's no depth to it, it's as if he's reciting from a textbook. Nothing of his actions feels new, or edgy.
Back to the continuity, and it really does drag the whole thing down. Sequences feel lost within the film, leading to no development or pay-off. Whereas other scenes cut off at the worst points, the editing here is very poor indeed. It has the feeling of a script that had been re-written and altered too far beyond recognition, every attempt to ground it again just took it further from the simple storyline it should have had. But nothing prepares you for the ending, which defies all logic and common sense. I swear, it would have felt more at home in a Roadrunner cartoon episode that a Hollywood film.
To speak of the good points, there are very few. Some of the camerawork did feel more professional, and there are tiny moments where it feels as if the heist team are working well together. It's like these are the minute glimpses you get of the original story showing through, or else its sheer luck on a good shooting day. That's really all there is here, you have to be searching hard to find the good moments.
I will say here that this isn't a terrible film. Even though it does have racial slurs and sewer-level humour, it's not that offensively bad. It just comes across as being very..... dull, and dim-witted. I was just bored throughout this to be honest, it's a movie that's been done far better before, and it brings nothing new to the table except half-baked ideas that are never seen through. It's a very Low Rental, if you really feel like you need to see this, don't pay for it, and just catch it on TV. And if anyone tries to re-create how this film "hid the wealth".... fuck's sake, they deserve to be stolen from by a team of nitwits.
Thanks for reading! ^__^