Thursday, October 25, 2012

Alex Cross [2012]

MPAA (PG-13)  CNS/USCCB (A-III)  Roger Ebert (2 Stars)  Fr. Dennis (3 Stars)

IMDb listing
CNS/USCCB review
Roger Ebert's review

Alex Cross (directed by Rob Cohen, screenplay by Marc Moss and Kerry Williamson based on the novel by James Patterson) is about the exploits of an African American detective and psychologist named Dr. Alex Cross (played in the film by Tyler Perry).  In the novels, he lives and works in the South East quadrant of Washington D.C. In the current film he and his family live in Detroit, MI. In both cases these are both "tough" generally crime ridden areas but with some more upscale sections where wealthier/upper middle class African Americans (like Alex Cross and his family) live.

The film concerns itself with Alex Cross' hunting down a particularly sadistic criminal who is given the nick-name "Picasso" (played by Matthew Fox) because he tends to leave charcoal drawings of his victims (often wrything in pain) at the scenes of the crimes.  This criminal apparently sees killing as an "art form" and he also _enjoys_ seeing his victims in pain.

After a particularly brutal murder of the woman of an otherwise unsavory gangster, Alex Cross and his partner Tommy Kane (played by Edward Burns) are brought in on the case.  After "Picasso" finds out that Alex Cross is on his tail, he of course takes enjoyment in "playing" with him and finding some very awful ways to cause Cross and his family (Alex Cross' wife Maria played by Carmen Ejogo, daughter Janelle played by Yara Shahidi, son Damon played by Sayeed Shahidi, and mother played by Cicely Tyson) pain.

IMHO it all makes for a rather good crime thriller and I like the development of Alex Cross' family.  However, PARENTS I would definitely warn you that the film should really be rated R.  There are definitely some very graphic/violent scenes present.  IMHO that does not necessarily make it a bad film, just at times a rather violent one and parents/families ought to know what they are walking into in that regard.

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