Linda and Al Lerner

Linda and Al Lerner
Tomatometer-approved critic
Biography:
Linda and Al Lerner are members of the Chicago Independent Film Critics Circle (CIFCC) and the Women Film Critics Circle (WFCC). They have been reviewing film and covering film festivals for more than a decade. Al is a member of SAG/AFTRA. He was Sports Anchor/Feature reporter (ABC?s WLS-TV News-Chicago and radio personality/talk show host at WGN Radio, then syndicated on the USA Radio Network interviewing high profile entertainment, sports newsmakers to authors and politicians. Linda was Assignment Editor/Writer/Producer at CBS? WBBM-TV News (Chicago) and KNBC-TV news in LA. She wrote and produced movie and music features covering junkets for the Radio Network (60 stations nationwide) and Supervising Producer of a children?s musical special for PBS that won 3 Emmys.
Publications: Movies and Shakers

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
23% Phil (2019) Greg Kinnear directs himself as a dentist with suicidal tendencies in a bizarre dark comedy. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 12, 2019
95% Sword of Trust (2019) This small, unpretentious comedy starring comedian Marc Maron, delivers some surprising laughs, despite a thin plot line. Maron, as Mel, leads a talented ensemble playing quirky characters tossing lines back and forth in a pawn shop. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 12, 2019
90% The Art of Self-Defense (2019) Jesse Eisenberg, Alessandro Nivola, and Imogen Poots learned new tricks and kicks for this surprisingly funny, entertaining, dark, deadpan comedy that makes a statement on masculinity. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 12, 2019
45% Stuber (2019) In the future, Kumail Nanjiani and Dave Bautista will act in better movies than this. We look forward to sharing one of those rides. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 12, 2019
90% Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) Director Jon Watts is back to take on the challenge and try as he might, he doesn't completely capture the fun vibe of the first movie. Though good eye candy, this film is uneven, disjointed and jumbled. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 4, 2019
63% Yesterday (2019) Himesh Patel may never be a rock star and this movie may not rock your world, but it's a pleasant trip down Abbey Road. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 28, 2019
82% Midsommar (2019) Sweden may be one of the happiest places on Earth, but Australian Writer/Director, Ari Aster(Hereditary), shows us the most disturbing bunch of blondes you could ever imagine. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 25, 2019
59% Ophelia (2019) This is a very different take on Shakespeare's Hamlet. But the production design, cinematography and the performances of Ridley and Watts make this a film worth watching. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 25, 2019
71% The Spy Behind Home Plate (2019) Fascinating life story of baseball player turned WWII spy, including his encounter with Albert Einstein offering to teach Moe mathematics if he would teach Einstein baseball. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 24, 2019
93% Echo In the Canyon (2019) Amazing access to the mid '60s music heroes who changed music forever helps the plodding pace of this extraordinary film. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 20, 2019
93% The Last Black Man in San Francisco (2019) In this gritty, but picturesque, dramatic fantasy, Jimmie reminds those who complain and whine about life in our troubled metropolis' saying "You can't hate a place unless you love it first." - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 20, 2019
33% Being Frank (2019) You expect Jim Gaffigan to make you laugh, but this, his first lead role, is serious. It's a dramedy. One we think could have had both more comedy and more drama. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 20, 2019
31% Shaft (2019) Samuel L. Jackson seems to have more fun than any actor should playing Shaft again. There is plenty of action and a high body count, but some rock solid urban comedy as well. And you get the benefit of not one, but 3 generations of Shafts. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 14, 2019
98% Toy Story 4 (2019) We all grew up with Woody, Buzz, Bo Peep and their buddies. The new characters are just as fun. They all show true emotion so well, that will tug at your heart and even draw a tear. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 14, 2019
22% Men in Black International (2019) Overall, Men in Black: International is a growing list of summer blockbuster disappointments with sequel-itis. Anyone who sees thisMIB definitely needs to be neuralyzied before even considering seeing another one hit the screen. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 13, 2019
90% A Star Is Born (2018) This film has it all, and the performances are beyond expectations. Cooper was already an excellent actor, but he has set a high bar for himself now as a director. And this will not be the last time you will see Lady Gaga acting in a lead role. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 9, 2019
76% Halston (2019) It is fascinating to see footage collected by Director Frédéric Tcheng (Dior and I) showing Halston's incredible ability to look at a piece of cloth and, with just scissors, cut it into an elegant piece of perfect couture. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 7, 2019
95% Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché (2019) This film is packed with priceless old films and informative interviews. Alice's films were so ahead of her time in themes and technique that it boggles the mind why we didn't know her name until now. Green's research and presentation are impressive. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 7, 2019
80% Late Night (2019) This is a good but not great movie that makes a necessary statement about the lack of diversity and need for more women in corporations as well as in entertainment. There were some cute and funny moments but we wish there had been more jokes. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 7, 2019
23% Dark Phoenix (2019) This film is not the installment that will spark a new crop of X-Men fans. This is one Phoenix that doesn't deserve to rise again. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 7, 2019
86% Pavarotti (2019) Whether you like opera or not, this film is an interesting study of how Pavarotti became a super star. Howard uses videos of Pavarotti singing on stage that are so close and personal, you can literally count the opera star's teeth. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 7, 2019
45% The Tomorrow Man (2019) This film is a graphic example of opposites attract and who better to watch play those than Blythe Danner and John Lithgow. The pace is slow and the story is simple reflecting to the action or inaction of seniors trying to cope. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 31, 2019
55% Ma (2019) This is not a great film, but Spencer is worth watching in an unexpected turn. Her reactions to Ma's revenge filled successes and failures keep you guessing and squirming in your seats. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 31, 2019
41% Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019) This Godzilla falls flatter than the buildings he and other monsters crush around Fenway Park. Action fans are the only ones who can rejoice seeing this hyper-active second offering starring the super-size reptile with a cold heart of gold. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 30, 2019
90% Rocketman (2019) While Elton John's life may not have always been a fantasy, Taron Egerton has humanized and lionized him at the same time. Rocketman takes Egerton's star to new heights. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 30, 2019
97% Booksmart (2019) Females own the screen, from director to writers to actors, following 2 academic nerds who decide it's time to go "Wilde" in this hilarious comedy...Booksmart is just plain smart. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 24, 2019
57% Aladdin (2019) Parents will take the kids out of nostalgia, but be disappointed with the results. The saying, "Everything old is new again" may work sometimes...but not for this live action version. This carpet ride never takes off. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 23, 2019
90% The Souvenir (2019) A young woman's struggle with her art and love is exacerbated in this well forged, but depressing British drama. Joanna Hogg wrote and directed this autobiographical script which exposes a self-destructive, addictive relationship. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 21, 2019
71% All Is True (2019) Branaugh directs, acts and researched every minute detail of the Bard's life meticulously. He presents it beautifully in this enlightening, but slow moving film about his neglected relationship with his family. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 20, 2019
90% John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum (2019) There is so much murder and it happens so fast that you're left with admiration for the dance rather than what is happening to the dancers. You have to give credit for the extraordinarily creative ways to fend off Wick's constant flow of enemies. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 16, 2019
51% Tolkien (2019) Finnish Director Dome Karukoski recreates the events of Tolkien's early life but gives too little time to his creative process. Tolkien's books were magical, but this film doesn't make his fantasy world as accessible on film as we would have liked. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 10, 2019
14% The Hustle (2019) The Hustle could and should have been a platform for these two talented actresses and an acclaimed Director to make some pointed social commentary with wit, charm and laughs. Instead we get a movie beneath them and a good argument to not do remakes. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 10, 2019
89% Meeting Gorbachev (2019) Herzog develops an easy, open relationship with Gorbachev which allows him to ask intimate questions beyond the nuts and bolts of history. It's always a pleasure to watch Herzog at work as an interviewer.. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 9, 2019
92% If the Dancer Dances (2019) Director Maia Wechsler and her editor Mary Manhardt stayed on point with a difficult editing job to make this film hang together. It is almost too repititious...If you're not into dance particularly modern dance, this might not be for you. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 9, 2019
65% The White Crow (2019) Fiennes plucked a dancer who looks like Nureyev for the role, but Ukrainian ballet star Oleg Ivenko never acted before and it shows. Graceful when he dances, Ivenko is a little stiff acting in what should have been a more emotional drama. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 7, 2019
28% UglyDolls (2019) With so much talent, good music and messages, we wish this colorful film had been better...Even Clarkson and Monae in a duet for the big finish "Unbreakable" does not stand out. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 5, 2019
94% Ask Dr. Ruth (2019) "Short people make the best lovers." according to 4' 7", 90 year-old sex therapist, Dr. Ruth Westheimer. Director Ryan White exposes this energetic woman with personality to burn just by letting her talk which she does incessantly... - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 4, 2019
97% Hail Satan? (2019) Though perhaps not quite as over-the-top outrageous as her previous projects, Hail Satan? still has some jaw-dropping, laugh-out-loud moments following the followers of Satanism...Hail Satan? is a hail of a thought-provoking good time. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 2, 2019
81% Long Shot (2019) The unlikely pairing of Charlize Theron with Seth Rogen proves hilariously that politics makes strange bedfellows...the chemistry between Theron and Rogen works. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted May 2, 2019
68% Stockholm (2019) This film is very uneven. At times you're rooting for Lars and Gunnar. At other times, you've had enough and want it to end. Hawke and Rapace are fun to watch playing against each other. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 30, 2019
30% Red Joan (2019) Dame Judi Dench is compelling as a spy in this drama, but we wish this film, billed as a thriller, had been more exciting. It's more of an anti-war film, but told through the life and romantic liaisons of a young woman... - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 25, 2019
57% J.T. LeRoy (2019) Exceptional acting helps this film about a made-up, gender-bending, genius author that never existed, but, unfortunately, this film leaves no lasting impression. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 25, 2019
94% Avengers: Endgame (2019) Millions of us have invested countless hours and billions of dollars in these MCU movies so the outcome holds cosmic consequence.The payoff here is considerable and a worthy conclusion to this enormous part of the franchise. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 23, 2019
99% Amazing Grace (2019) But the hand held video up close on Aretha's face while she is in The Zone affords an intimate window to her devotion to the words she's singing. Her voice is so pure. Seeing Aretha rise in this film, you can't help but be inspired. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 23, 2019
90% Wild Nights with Emily (2019) This is a much lighter portrayal of Emily Dickinson than Cynthia Nixon gave in A Quiet Passion. Molly Shannon makes her Emily more open, passionate, human and even funny. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 21, 2019
72% Teen Spirit (2019) We knew Elle Fanning could act, but can she sing? She excels at both and despite the predictable story line, her performance overcomes the shortcoming leading to a sensational climax. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 20, 2019
92% Disneynature: Penguins (2019) Fothergill and Wyatt Wilson followed these creatures for 4 years and they take you up close and personal with this most entertaining and engaging waddler and the rest of the colony. ...Steve will melt your heart. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 16, 2019
84% Her Smell (2019) It's inevitable this film will be compared to the recent Vox Lux starring Natalie Portman who also plays an unhinged, past-her-prime rock diva...Moss just grabs you by the throat and won't let you turn away. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 15, 2019
46% Little (2019) Director Tina Gordon (Drumline, What Men Want) has packed the film with top talent wearing the coolest clothes, put them in spectacular settings, but created a more a series of sight gags strung together instead of a movie that flows. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 12, 2019
18% Hellboy (2019) This Hellboy is neither shocking nor camp despite its R-rated bloody beheadings and dismemberments ...this movie is just one helluva bloody mess. - Movies and Shakers EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 12, 2019