Movie Review of the Week: Alex Cross

Kameron Duncan, Sports Editor

Alex Cross is not a good movie. First and foremost, that’s essential to understanding why it’s so frustrating. It’s no fault of the actors (aside from Matthew Fox most of them aren’t particularly that skilled), it just gets in its own way sometimes.
A perfect example is the Alex Cross character, played by Tyler Perry. Director Rob Cohen tries so hard to make the character into an action hero, which isn’t how he should be portrayed. In the novels that inspired the movie, Cross is a cerebral detective, a master of wit and cunning. Too often in this film he is reduced to a brute, sometimes even fumbling around, looking for answers.
The movie suffers from a multitude of hangups. The special effects (used primarily for explosives) are absolutely terrible. They’re on the level of what you would expect from a Saturday night movie on the Sci-Fi channel. The script and dialogue is also heavily clichéd, to the point where I could even predict how the characters would respond to one another. Another major flaw of the film is the way it ends. It drags on for about an extra thirty minutes, and gives no real payoff to the viewer.
The action scenes, however, are easily the worst thing about the movie. It’s clear that a stunt double was used for Perry’s stunts, and even when he’s seen running on screen, it just looks terrible. Watching those scenes was almost like watching a parody of an action movie on Saturday Night Live.
Despite all of the bad that plagues this film, there are a few good things about it. Matthew Fox’s performance is one of them. He plays a deranged, unnamed ex-military operative that begins a string of murders in Detroit. Fox does a good job of making himself seem truly evil and despicable, which is how villains should be seen in these kinds of movies. Tyler Perry does try his best, and in some scenes he does show signs of promise. The movie is also filmed quite well, and is generally aesthetically pleasing.
However, at the end of the day, there are just too many things wrong with this film to ignore. It was marketed badly, casted badly, directed badly, and for the most part acted badly as well.
I give Alex Cross a 3/10. I would only recommend it to people that really, really enjoy Tyler Perry. Anyone else should avoid it like the plague.