Alex Cross

  • Year:2012
  • Rating:M
  • Director:Rob Cohen
  • Cast:Ed Burns, Matthew Fox, Tyler Perry, Jean Reno
  • Release Date:November 08, 2012
  • Distributor:Hoyts
  • Running time:101 minutes
  • Film Worth:$6.00
  • FILMINK rates movies out of $20 - the score indicates the amount we believe a ticket to the movie to be worth

A fizzler of a thriller that’s so poorly written and executed that it borders on feeling like a detective spoof.

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Previously depicted by Morgan Freeman in Kiss The Girls and Along Came A Spider, mastermind homicide detective Alex Cross (based on the character from James Patterson’s book series) returns to the big screen with Tyler Perry tackling the titular role. Under the direction of action heavyweight Rob Cohen (The Fast and the Furious, xXx), the result is a hackneyed mess, lacking in thrills, suspense and intelligence.

Serving as a prequel to Freeman’s films, this outing sees Detective Cross hot on the trail of homicidal maniac ‘Picasso’ (Matthew Fox) – coined the genius nickname after leaving a charcoal drawing at a crime scene. Cross, so brilliant at his job he can “tell if you had scrambled eggs for breakfast a hundred miles away”, is one step ahead of the killer and intercepts his planned attack on billionaire Leon Mercier (Jean Reno). Picasso gets angry and things get personal between Cross and the killer…

Hopes of a mildly effective crime thriller are dashed when Cross enters his first crime scene. In a matter of seconds, he confidently identifies the weapons used, the killer’s motives and their next victims. As he states his 100% accurate, yet entirely baseless assessments, he stares contemplatively into the distance. Alex Cross wasn’t conceived as spoof, but such poorly written and executed dross is laughable.

The cast do their best with the material, with Perry succeeding to an extent – warm and believable as the family man, but floundering as a hard-edged Sherlock Holmes. Lost star Matthew Fox appears to have invested a lot into the film, almost unrecognisable as the heavily tattooed, all-muscle maniac. His physical transformation can’t disguise overacting, but at least it’s an effectively menacing performance.

Director Rob Cohen has proven himself capable of delivering the goods when it comes to high-octane action sequences but the few scenes that call for his expertise are clumsily handled, barely raising the pulse. The final showdown between the detective and killer in a decaying Detroit theatre is a particular fizzer.

With one-dimensional characters, pathetic dialogue and sup-par action, the film’s tagline, “Don’t ever cross Alex Cross”, certainly rings true. Steer clear. 


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