DVD review: Alex Cross

Alex Cross

(M) *

Director: Rob Cohen.

Cast: Tyler Perry, Matthew Fox, Edward Burns, Rachel Nichols, Carmen Ejogo, Jean Reno.

IF you're a fan of author James Patterson, you'll know the name Alex Cross.

At last count there were 20 books featuring the gun-toting psychologist/detective, and twice he has been brought to the big screen, portrayed by Morgan Freeman in Kiss The Girls and Along Came A Spider.

But even if you've read all the books and seen the other movies, there is no compelling reason to watch this reboot starring Tyler Perry as a young Cross.

The script is bad - it's facepalm-worthy and inadvertently hilarious in places - and someone wasn't paying attention to see whether any of the scenes or even the entire plot made sense.

Cross and his cop partners Monica (Nichols) and long-time buddy Tommy (Burns) are on the trail of a psychopathic killer Picasso (Fox), who is attempting to kill off people connected to French businessman Mercier (Reno).

Eventually, things become personal, leading Cross and Tommy to go on a personal vendetta to stop Picasso.

Where to start with all the things wrong with this film?

Perry as Cross was a bad casting move - his performance ranges from "actually quite good" to "in the wrong film", while his friendship with Burns' Tommy is about as believable as that time Elton John married a woman.

An unrecognisable Fox - who looks like he's been on some kind of gym-and-heroin training regime - appears to be going for "menacing and unhinged" but comes off as "nutty and weird", although he does get to participate in one of the few cool moments in the film, which involves Picasso shooting a rocket from a train.

If you're thinking "what the?" at the thought of someone firing a rocket from a train, that actually makes sense compared to other parts of the film. Some of my favourite baffling moments include Picasso escaping a high-rise that took considerate effort to enter by simply running out of a room and miraculously popping out of sewer manhole many storeys down. Or two cops breaking into their police station's evidence room via an elaborate plan that involves cutting through iron bars and punching out another cop, when they could have just walked in there and found an easier way to get to the evidence, because, you know, they're cops.

Worst of all, Cross comes off as less a Sherlock Holmes/The Mentalist kind of character and more of a lucky guesser. The water pressure is dropping in your building? Don't call a plumber - it means there's a killer in the building!

You could almost recommend Alex Cross as a so-bad-it's-good movie, but not quite - it's more just bafflingly bad.

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