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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Tower Heist

By
Sr. Rose Pacatte, F.S.P.
Source: AmericanCatholic.org

Whatever you think “Tower Heist” is as a film, it is really not a comedy, despite comedian Ben Stiller in the lead as Josh, the manager of a luxury condominium complex in Manhattan and the presence of Eddie Murphy as “Slide” the gangster.
 
Arthur Shaw (Alan Alda) is a millionaire financier who lives in the penthouse. The FBI arrests him for a Ponzi scheme that has robbed many people of their investments and livelihoods. Josh must admit to all the people who work at the Tower that he invested their retirement funds with Shaw, without their permission. He loses his job but along with his brother-in-law Charlie (Casey Affleck), an evicted tenant Mr. Fitzhugh (Matthew Broderick), a lock-picking housekeeper Odessa (Gabourey Sidibe), and the newly hired pseudo electrician Enrique (Michael Pena), they discover where Shaw has stashed his safety net funds.
 
I did not think this was a very funny movie but it is very clever and it has a strong moral center in a world where financial ethics are a joke. That center is Josh, who does perpetrate a heist to get their money back but uses illegal means. The FBI is ready to arrest them all but Josh provides the real treasure: information. The FBI agrees to let all his accomplices go, but Josh has to go to prison for two years. For the sake of his friends who had lost so much, he agrees to the deal. And Shaw does get arrested for his crimes.
 
The film was ok but I was disappointed that it wasn’t as funny as the previews led us to believe. Heists are supposed to be improbable tales about losers outwitting the winners and this one did so with interesting characters, though it was almost impossible to understand Casey Affleck’s mumbled lines.
  The heist takes place dangling between the 40th and 50th floors I think. I really hate a heist at that height.


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James of the Marche: Meet one of the fathers of the modern pawnshop! 
<p>James was born in the Marche of Ancona, in central Italy along the Adriatic Sea. After earning doctorates in canon and civil law at the University of Perugia, he joined the Friars Minor and began a very austere life. He fasted nine months of the year; he slept three hours a night. St. Bernardine of Siena told him to moderate his penances. </p><p>James studied theology with St. John of Capistrano. Ordained in 1420, James began a preaching career that took him all over Italy and through 13 Central and Eastern European countries. This extremely popular preacher converted many people (250,000 at one estimate) and helped spread devotion to the Holy Name of Jesus. His sermons prompted numerous Catholics to reform their lives and many men joined the Franciscans under his influence. </p><p>With John of Capistrano, Albert of Sarteano and Bernardine of Siena, James is considered one of the "four pillars" of the Observant movement among the Franciscans. These friars became known especially for their preaching. </p><p>To combat extremely high interest rates, James established <i>montes pietatis</i> (literally, mountains of charity)--nonprofit credit organizations that lent money at very low rates on pawned objects. </p><p>Not everyone was happy with the work James did. Twice assassins lost their nerve when they came face to face with him. James died in 1476 and was canonized in 1726.</p> American Catholic Blog We all have fears, but we don’t have to be afraid. Jesus is always with us to protect us and give us courage. We only have to remember that the battle is the Lord’s. When Jesus gives us the victory, let’s be sure to thank Him and praise Him for what He has done.

 
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