Making the Grades
Nick Cassidy (Sam Worthington) is determined to prove his innocence. Serving the beginning of a 25-year sentence for the theft of a $40 million diamond, the former cop decides to take more drastic action after he is denied the right to a retrial. And he gets that chance when he is granted permission to attend his father’s funeral. Bolting from the cemetery, Nick narrowly escapes from the guards that accompany him.
With his newfound freedom he enlists his brother Joey (Jamie Bell) in a plan that will hopefully prove the diamond is still in the hands of its owner David Englander (Ed Harris) and, in turn, accuse the wealthy Manhattan resident of insurance fraud. The elaborate setup requires a major distraction to keep eyes away from the building where Englander’s vault is located—a distraction like a man about to jump from a high ledge across the street.
Perilous from start to finish, this is one movie that won’t induce snoozing. Good pacing and a reasonably solid plot with few holes make the setup believable. Added to the mix is young detective Lydia Mercer (Elizabeth Banks) whose initial determination to save the unknown suicidal man helps to generate empathy for the ex-con protagonist.
Profanities, while not extremely frequent, are heard throughout the film and include a single use of a sexual expletive. There are also physical confrontations that escalate into gunfire. As a result, characters are shot and a bloody wound is depicted. Perhaps even more concerning for parents is the initial theme of a man appearing to contemplate suicide, as well as the notions of using crime to fight crime and putting other citizens at risk in order to prove one man’s innocence.
Although Man On A Ledge is a movie adults may enjoy, the high language and violence issues might make the film a risky recommendation for teen viewing.
Discussion Ideas After The Movie
Teaching ideas and topics to discuss about Man On A Ledge.
In trying to prove his innocence, the protagonist in this film not only puts himself at risk, but also many other people. Is threatening their safety justified in this case? What other alternatives could Nick have explored? What happens early in the script to make it appear that this is his only choice? How does this add rationale to his actions?