Dr. Alex Cross is on his last police duty to track down an assassin called Picasso, who's been torturing and killing rich businessmen in Detroit. Soon when the mission gets personal, Cross is pushed to the edge of his moral and psychological limits to end this once and for all.
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I'm a big fan of the 'Alex Cross' series of books. I feel they've weakened a little in recent years, but was still glad to hear they were rebooting the movie series. The most exciting part of the books for me was always the villains, The Wolf, The Mastermind, Casanova etc. and how Cross would be effected by them and ultimately track them down and confront them. This was key to the quality of each individual book to me and I felt the first two movies 'Kiss the Girls' and 'Along Came a Spider' were a real let down in this regard. So I was glad to my find myself captivated by Matthew Fox's portrayal of Picasso. His opening scene demands your attention and his screen presence never lets up from that point on. The other thing I was always going to be interested in was how Tyler Perry went at portraying Cross. For me Morgan Freeman has always just been Cross. When I'm reading one of the books I can't help but picture him. He brought a calm serenity to the role that helped define Cross for me and I felt Perry had this as well, at least for the first half of the film. The film really shows us two sides of Cross. At around the halfway stage, Cross's pregnant wife is shot dead by Picasso himself. This enrages Cross and sends him rogue along with his partner Thomas Kane who also has had his lover murdered by Picasso. From this point on we see a darker Cross, willing to use any means necessary to enact revenge upon his wife's killer. Perry's performance gets even better from this stage on. He nails the intensity needed to bring the audience in on the pain and drive he's feeling to achieve his ultimate goal. The problems lie in the writing for the most part. The opening and closing action sequences just don't have any imagination. The car crash that sets up the closing one is also bizarre. Are we just supposed to believe this was a complete coincidence? Or has Cross displayed superhuman timing to achieve this, risking his friends life in the process? Incredibly lazy writing shown at that point. It's far from perfect. The actress cast as Nana Mama was done so poorly. She had none of the charm that the character in the books has. She just came across as mean. The twist right at the end is one of the most foreseeable I can ever remember. One scene, from a big name actor, that added absolutely nothing to the story at the time = has to be a twist that he was in on it. More lazy writing. But for all its faults its a very watchable movie. Perry and Fox are excellent and the story is entertaining, if flawed. I certainly have no objections to more additions being added to the series.