I thought Morgan Freeman was pretty good, and even (gasp) Gwyneth Paltrow in her one scene opposite Freeman; I thought Fincher created a nicely textured little world, no small thanks to Darius Khondji. The script was pretty silly tho.
You could see his limitations in the scene where he (SPOILERS) realizes what's in the box. All Freeman had to do was point his eyes to the heavens, and you could appreciate the full weight of the tragedy. Pitt looked like someone drew a fork across the side of his car.
Pitt's was the kind of guy who thinks getting his paintjob scratched is a tragedy. Shallow and superficial.
Yeah, Pitt's character's supposed to be shallow, but I thought his grief shouldn't be. It was supposed to be his moment of transcendence, when he goes beyond shallowness (y'know--"become Wrath" and all that). After all, that thing in the box is supposed to be important.
Cruise I liked in Magnolia, tho I didn't like the movie.