I have to admit I have a soft spot for movies involving a group of people, all with different skill sets, who come together to pull off a job. And that may be the reason I enjoyed Tower Heist as much as I did, that and the fact that it has an odd cast that works very well together and with its sense of humour in the right place.
Directed by Brett Ratner (the same who guy who gave us X-Men: The Last Stand and the Rush Hour series), the story is of a group of fired employees of an expensive hotel, lead by Josh Kovacs (Ben Stiller), who decide to steal $20 million from one of the hotel's residents (Alan Alda) after they find out he defrauded them of their pensions. With the help of an "expert thief" Josh knows (Eddie Murphy) they plan and execute the robbery to perfection... or at least try to.
Tower Heist is nothing we haven't seen before done a lot better. It could readily be described as the "Diet Ocean's," lacking the wit and panache of Steven Soderbergh's franchise (although funnily enough one of the writers, Ted Griffin, actually co-wrote Ocean's Eleven). But on its own merits this is an enjoyable film where you actually, shockingly, care about the characters and their quest for monetary revenge.
This is helped largely by a likeable ensemble cast including a solid Ben Stiller (a hit or miss actor as of late) and a surprisingly good Eddie Murphy, returning to comedic form after such clunkers as Meet Dave, Imagine That, and Norbit. Other supporting players include Matthew Broderick, Casey Affleck (another Ocean's connection), Michael Peña, and Gabourey Sidibe, who I'm glad to see getting more roles after her amazing debut turn in Precious, here displaying her evidently sharp funny bone. Each of the cast get their chance to throw in one-liners, each bring something slightly different to the comedic table.