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Tower Heist (2011)

PG-13 | | Action, Comedy, Crime | 4 November 2011 (USA)
Trailer
2:02 | Trailer
When a group of hard-working guys find out they've fallen victim to their wealthy employer's Ponzi scheme, they conspire to rob his high-rise residence.

Director:

Brett Ratner

Writers:

Adam Cooper (story), Bill Collage (story) | 4 more credits »
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2,681 ( 2,384)
3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ben Stiller ... Josh Kovaks
Eddie Murphy ... Slide
Casey Affleck ... Charlie
Alan Alda ... Arthur Shaw
Matthew Broderick ... Mr. Fitzhugh
Stephen McKinley Henderson ... Lester
Judd Hirsch ... Mr. Simon
Téa Leoni ... Special Agent Claire Denham
Michael Peña ... Enrique Dev'Reaux
Gabourey Sidibe ... Odessa
Nina Arianda ... Miss Iovenko
Marcia Jean Kurtz ... Rose
Juan Carlos Hernández ... Manuel
Harry O'Reilly ... Special Agent Dansk
Peter Van Wagner ... Marty Klein Esq.
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Storyline

Manager of a high-rise condo, Josh Kovaks' a good relationship with the tenants; especially financier, Arthur Shaw. When Shaw's arrested for fraud. Josh thinks it's a misunderstanding that can be resolved, but later he learns that the employees' pension fund - which he asked Shaw to handle - is gone. When one of the employees tries to kill himself, Josh's views of Shaw change. He goes to see him and loses his temper - and his job. An FBI agent tells him Shaw might just walk, and recovering the fund is unlikely. She tells him it's been rumored that Shaw has $20 million lying around if he needs it in a hurry. Josh thinks he knows where it is. Josh, along with 2 other (fired) employees, a(n evicted) tenant, and an (criminal) acquaintance, they set out to get into Shaw's, and get the money. Written by rcs0411@yahoo.com

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Ordinary guys. An extraordinary robbery. See more »

Genres:

Action | Comedy | Crime

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for language and sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site [France]

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish | Chinese

Release Date:

4 November 2011 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Trump Heist See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$75,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$24,025,190, 6 November 2011

Gross USA:

$78,046,570

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$152,930,623
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | Datasat | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The scene in the paddy wagon where Josh and his crew confront, Arthur Shaw was shot in a real paddy wagon truck which made it harder to shoot due to the confined spaces according to Director Brett Ratner See more »

Goofs

The 1912 chess game Shaw references while talking to Kovacs is a real game, although rather than playing it out as he claims, Levitsky resigned after Marshall moved his Queen, realizing checkmate was inevitable. Additionally, the term "Marshall Swindle" did not originate solely from that game, but rather from Frank Marshall's well known tactic of giving his opponent a seemingly decisive advantage, only to storm back out of nowhere to "swindle" them out of the victory. Another well known "Marshall Swindle" occurred in 1904. See more »

Quotes

Radio Host: You know, not many of you kill your own Thanksgiving turkey, but you might want to consider it...
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Estrenos Críticos: La Ninfa de MELANCOLÍA (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Genius of Love
Written by Tom Tom Club
Performed by Tom Tom Club
Courtesy of Metered Music Inc. and
Courtesy of The Island Def Jam Music Group
Under license from the Universal Music Enterprises and
Courtesy of Warner Bros. Records Inc.
By arrangement with Warner Music Group Film & TV Licensing
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Cookie-Cutter Action-Comedy
4 November 2011 | by colinrgeorgeSee all my reviews

Everyone's excited for the new Brett Ratner movie, right? Jonesing for another marginal action-comedy in the vein of Rush Hour 2? You're in luck! Tower Heist fits the bill, and despite its allusions to 2011 Wall Street turmoil, the familiar flick feels very much of that era. The Rat-man's latest is cookie-cutter entertainment at its most transient, but everyone likes cookies. Right?

In Tower Heist, Ben Stiller plays subservient chief of staff at a ritzy Central Park apartment complex — but when a tenant (Alan Alda) swindles him and his workforce out of their pensions, it's no more Mr. Nice Josh. He masterminds a robbery with the help of his concierge (Casey Affleck), an elevator operator (Michael Peña), a downtrodden former resident (Matthew Broderick), and a Jamaican cleaning woman (Gabourey Sidibe). Unschooled as they are in the art of the steal, Josh also employs the aid of petty criminal "Slide," (Eddie Murphy) who gives the crew a crash course in crime.

The cast of Tower Heist, anchored by Stiller, Alda, and the under-appreciated 'other' Affleck, is its greatest asset. Gabourey Sidibe pulls a Melissa McCarthy in a similar big girl supporting role, and as for Eddie Murphy — it's good to know that there's still a funny guy beneath the Norbit prosthetics. Granted, nobody's working with AAA material here, but their comic chemistry makes for some laugh out loud moments.

Conceived and written by Ted Griffin of Ocean's Eleven and Matchstick Men, Tower Heist strictly adheres to caper convention. Assemble the team, unfurl the plan, set said plan into motion, and wait for it all to come undone. It's a tried and true formula, which is ironic considering the risk its characters incur. There's even a heavy-handed chess metaphor about sacrificing one's Queen, but Griffin is a decidedly defensive player.

Then there's the Rat-factor. Poor Brett's an easy guy to hate. Called "Hollywood's Ad Impresario" by Businessweek, he's the dude who wants to make a Guitar Hero movie. He's a purely commercial filmmaker who's helmed competent but inferior follow-ups to beloved franchises like X-Men and Silence of the Lambs. And let's face it, he's kind of ugly. With Tower Heist, the director isn't flexing any artistic muscles, but he's got the mechanics down pat.

Plus, he's got the good sense to hire performers who probably don't need much direction. Guys like Stiller, Murphy, and Broderick are so well practiced that they're entertaining even when they're resting on their laurels. Similarly, Ratner's worked with cinematographer Dante Spinotti enough times to not have to concern himself with the visual aspects of filmmaking. Though the credits suggest otherwise, Ratner's role is nearer to producer than director.

Consequently, Tower Heist feels impersonal and even a bit disingenuous. After all, what could Brett Ratner, the privileged son of a Miami socialite turned blockbuster director, have in common with the working stiffs he portrays? It's easy to hate Ratner, but unfair to channel that negative energy at his work. With a good cast and decent material, Tower Heist is an amusing, inconsequential diversion that entertains and evaporates in the span of 100 minutes. And with a family friendly PG-13 rating, this cookie-cutter action-comedy is poised to make loads of dough.


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