The Tomatometer rating – based on the published opinions of hundreds of film and television critics – is a trusted measurement of movie and TV programming quality for millions of moviegoers. It represents the percentage of professional critic reviews that are positive for a given film or television show.
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The Tomatometer is 60% or higher.
The Tomatometer is 59% or lower.
Movies and TV shows are Certified Fresh with a steady Tomatometer of 75% or higher after a set amount of reviews (80 for wide-release movies, 40 for limited-release movies, 20 for TV shows), including 5 reviews from Top Critics.
Percentage of users who rate a movie or TV show positively.
Alan Alda plays the billionaire, and his oleaginous smarm is so good that you almost wish Alda were starring in a hard-edged movie about Madoff instead of this goofy heist picture that takes way too long getting to the heist.
Between the protracted setup and the fizzled execution, however, Tower Heist finds a nice comic groove in the job's planning stages, when Murphy finally bursts onto the scene and pings jokes off his timid counterparts.
The most that can be said for Tower Heist, the new action comedy from Brett Ratner, is that it's a middlingly well-done evocation of the big-budget caper you remember with vague fondness from long-ago matinees at the mall.
"Tower Heist" might not be a classic (it's not), but at least for a little while it will make you laugh instead of cry about the current state of affairs, which is more than you can say about a lot of things.
The type of film with which Mr. Ratner has claimed to be infatuated is itself like a caper -- it requires precise execution. "Tower Heist" is more like that 10-story Snoopy, as he drunkenly bobs along Central Park West.
Mr. Ratner goes for the safe bet and the easy score, which means that, for all his shows of solidarity with the working stiffs, he has more in common with the wealthy scam artist who took their hard-earned money.
Tower Heist constantly makes you aware of the buttons and levers the movie is pushing and pulling: There's something artificial and plastic about the film that keeps you from ever truly getting lost into it.
Tower Heist is painless to sit through, and the movie does pull off a few action set pieces that are vertiginously exciting. It's just too bad that Ratner isn't craftsman enough to keep this soufflé from collapsing.
A movie so elaborate that the New York Thanksgiving Day Parade plays a supporting role, complete with balloons and thousands of spectators, "Tower Heist" won't stay with you long. But, like popcorn, it's enjoyable while it lasts.
This isn't a great heist movie for a lot of reasons, beginning with the stupidity of its heist plan and the impossibility of these characters ever being successful at anything more complex than standing in line.
The big-budget pic goes wonky on the way to the bank, due to its lackluster pacing and shortage of the qualities that typically earn stars Ben Stiller and Eddie Murphy their paychecks -- namely, laughs.
Ratner and screenwriters Ted Griffin and Jeff Nathanson use the financial mayhem as a plot trigger for an elaborate scheme that, however far-fetched, is all but irresistible in its criminal legitimacy and its promise for just desserts.