The Daily Tar Heel
Printing news. Raising hell. Since 1893.
Friday, June 14, 2024 Newsletters Latest print issue

We keep you informed.

Help us keep going. Donate Today.
The Daily Tar Heel

“Tower Heist” lets moviegoers have their cake and eat it too, aligning them with average Joe characters pitted against Wall Street’s one percent while dazzling them with slick heist sequences.
It’s a con deftly pulled off by actors who invite you to disregard the implausibility of their task, and you wind up stuffing yourself with an enjoyable but ultimately unmemorable cinematic treat.

The film centers on Josh Kovacs (Ben Stiller), the general manager of a Manhattan high-rise. When penthouse resident Arthur Shaw is placed under house arrest for scamming employees out of their pensions, Kovacs and his coworkers hire a two-bit thief (Eddie Murphy) to help steal $20 million from Shaw’s apartment. Only security cameras and FBI agents stand in their way — and the cameras don’t matter because all the security guards “read” Playboy instead of working.

Despite the plot’s cheesiness, you can’t help but go along for the ride. These rookie thieves get the whip-pan visuals and cool film score of slick professionals, which carries viewers through much of the lazy writing.

As a side character, Murphy transmits his wonderful energy, which has recently tired in leading roles. Meanwhile, Stiller grounds this film in the reality its plot demands. You don’t have to suspend disbelief as much if you buy his straight-man persona.

In essence, Murphy orders you to eat cake while Stiller lets you feel less guilty about it. Enjoy.

To get the day's news and headlines in your inbox each morning, sign up for our email newsletters.

Special Print Edition
The Daily Tar Heel 2024 Orientation Guide