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The Morgan Freeman Psychological Thriller That Blew Up On Netflix

One of Morgan Freeman's most underrated flicks is making its mark on Netflix's charts. The cinematic icon has dominated the silver screen for over four decades and lent his talents to hits like the Dark Knight trilogy, "The Shawshank Redemption," "Se7en," and so many more that it's hard to keep track of. One of his more low-key offerings is 1997's "Kiss the Girls." Decades after its release, the psychological thriller has found a second life on Netflix. During the week of June 24 to June 30, 2024, "Kiss the Girls" was the third most-watched film globally on the platform according to official Netflix metrics. 

The streaming company says that it was viewed by over 7 million viewers, which led to over 13 million hours of view time. That's not bad, considering "Kiss the Girls" isn't considered to be one of Freeman's best movies according to IMDb. Viewers on the platform gave the Gary Fleder-directed picture an average 6.6/10 score. Over on Rotten Tomatoes, it has a poor 34% critics score. Upon release, critics dubbed the drama as an average thriller that failed to offer anything new. However, it found a fan in veteran critic Roger Ebert, who was particularly enthused by the actor's lead performance as Alex Cross. 

Most fans on the film-centric social media site Letterboxd seem to agree with critics, giving it an average star-rating of 3.1 out of 5. "... It's still watchable [though], even enjoyable at times ... Morgan Freeman is the best thing this film has," shared user @Twiggiebiggie in a 3-star review. 

Kiss the Girls is based on a James Patterson novel

"Kiss the Girls" is an adaptation of James Patterson's best-selling novel of the same name. The book, which debuted in 1995, features the second appearance of Patterson's beloved character Alex Cross. The detective has headlined over a dozen novels, emerging as one of Patterson's most popular and beloved heroes. "Kiss the Girls" was the first film to adapt the character for the big screen. While it received mixed critical receipts, it was a decent success at the box office, grossing north of $60 million worldwide against a $27 million budget.

"Kiss the Girls" follows Alex Cross on a mission to find the serial killer Casanova in North Carolina. He teams up with Kate (Ashley Judd), a victim of the killer, to help bring the villain to justice. Those hoping for a lean psychological thriller should find Morgan Freeman's leading man effort to be a solid watch. While it's not as iconic as his "Driving Miss Daisy" role — which he almost didn't get — it's still a solid entry in his overall filmography.

The release was enough of a success to warrant a sequel titled "Along Came a Spider" in 2001 — also based on the Patterson novel of the same name. It grossed over $100 million and is available to stream on Paramount+. Cross' cinematic exploits would be rebooted in 2012's "Alex Cross," with Tyler Perry in the lead role. That film is available to rent on platforms like Apple and Amazon.

Loved "Kiss the Girls" and want more of the actor in your life? Check out Freeman's films ranked from worst to best