Writer: Ng SuzhenWriter Ratings:Overall: Cast: Plot: Effects: Cinematography: Watch this if you liked:
The recent fad with Hong Kong thrillers is the need to provide shocking twists where who you perceive to be the hero might not necessarily be the good guy you should be rooting for.
"Cross" seems to bank on the fad with Simon Yam as the antagonist, or maybe even the protagonist, with him being cast as religious Catholic Lee Leung who also moonlights as a serial killer with a purpose from God.
The movie opens with promise as Lee calmly makes his way to the police station to give himself up, providing as well neatly kept folders of evidence. Audience will eagerly sit in anticipation, waiting for Lee's psychotic alter-ego to emerge from the mild-mannered killer but it is not to be.
What follows is disappointing evidence of too many cooks spoiling the broth. The credits of four writer-directors should have tipped us off. It's easy to see that an ambitious effort has been spent to provide a shocking twist but whoever is fully in charge of "Cross" could not pull it together.
Yam, who is probably the most aptly cast person in the movie, took on a role that has been underplayed and underused. His presence should have given the film a heightened sense of eeriness but fails to reach its potential for "Cross".
Cheung (Kenny Wong), the supposedly eccentric psychologist who dons on his subjects clothes and mimics their lifestyles in an attempt to know them better, also fails to shine despite his role as the clever foil to whoever the devious mastermind is behind the murders. What could have been an intense breakthrough into the truth of the murder cases are revealed in a flat, unexciting sequence.
The sole highlight would be the cameo by Nick Cheung, who provides some laughs as the proprietor of a website for suicide victims. Even in the few minutes he is on-screen, he shines brighter than the entire cast put together, even Simon Yam.
You get a feeling that the whole movie must have met with serious production mishap on the way to theatres as there are plenty of recycled footages. The only thing that seems to be seriously thought out would be beginning and the ending for the film. Whatever happened in the middle is just a last frantic rush to get the film together in time for a screening.
As a whole, the movie lacks a climax. Halfway through, you stop caring about the characters, even the murder victims whom one normally empathises with. Cinema Online, 23 November 2012