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      Movies and Shakers

      Movies and Shakers is not a Tomatometer-approved publication. Reviews from this publication only count toward the Tomatometer® when written by the following Tomatometer-approved critic(s): Linda and Al Lerner.

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      Rating Title | Year Author Quote
      May December (2023) Linda and Al Lerner There’s more than a little uncomfortable humor in this script. Brought to life with sharp performances from Natalie Portman and Julianne Moore, Todd Haynes’ direction of Samy Burch’s writing is one guilty pleasure.
      Posted Nov 29, 2023
      Rustin (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Rustin, the man, is ultimately more memorable than Rustin the film, even though Wolfe’s intentions and Colman’s passionate performance about race and freedom are strong, important and so relevant now.
      Posted Nov 29, 2023
      Maestro (2023) Linda and Al Lerner It is exquisitely inspiring. Kudos to Bradley Cooper for his commanding, demanding direction and research, plus his and Carey Mulligan’s passionate performances, bringing, this Maestro, more vibrant than ever, back to life.
      Posted Nov 23, 2023
      Saltburn (2023) Linda and Al Lerner This is an exquisitely shot, multilayered, psycho-sexual film that goes way too far. Fennell takes you on a shocking journey to find out who can master the game of riches in this salacious state of affairs that is Saltburn.
      Posted Nov 22, 2023
      Maxine's Baby: The Tyler Perry Story (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Bekele and Ortiz have laboriously created a powerful film about this multi-faceted industrious, creative, emotional man, who came from devastating beginnings, so proud to be called Maxine’s Baby.
      Posted Nov 20, 2023
      Napoleon (2023) Linda and Al Lerner By the time Wellington smacks him at Waterloo delivering yet another interminably long final pitched battle, we were ready for a little peace and quiet with Bonaparte in exile on St. Helena.
      Posted Nov 20, 2023
      Common Ground (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Farmers, particularly those with small farms, have a lot on their plate putting food on our plates, and this film shows how some simple changes managing the soil could make food more abundant and healthier for us all.
      Posted Nov 15, 2023
      The Holdovers (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Payne and Hemingson have created a well-paced, witty, film with just enough physical comedy for Giamatti and Sessa. We could see The Holdovers become a new holiday classic to be held over year after year.
      Posted Nov 10, 2023
      The Marvels (2023) Linda and Al Lerner With hit or miss visual effects and choppy storyline, The Marvels is not marvelous, but this trip gets the MCU back on track with fast, colorful, explosive action and a power-ful team of superheroes. 
      Posted Nov 10, 2023
      Priscilla (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Sofia Coppola’s adaptation of Priscilla Presley’s autobiography,“Elvis and Me,”makes the film as oppressive to watch as it was for Priscilla to live. It's written/directed with a stiffness giving little to get excited about, but maybe that was the point.
      Posted Nov 03, 2023
      Killers of the Flower Moon (2023) Linda and Al Lerner It gets a little exhausting watching 3 and a half hours of repetitive plots and crimes laboriously unraveling these lethal schemes. Still, with De Niro, Di Caprio and Gladstone, Scorsese has created a killer film.
      Posted Oct 19, 2023
      The Burial (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Jones’ deadpan facial expressions are priceless. He can raise one eyebrow and say it all. Foxx’s energy abounds and it looked like he was having a blast. You’re going to dig The Burial.
      Posted Oct 18, 2023
      Foe (2023) Linda and Al Lerner AI in a dystopian rural America couldn’t be a more current subject. Despite the subject matter and setting, even Saoirse Ronan with Paul Mescal, committed as they are in the lead as a devoted couple, can’t save this confusing film.
      Posted Oct 11, 2023
      Flora and Son (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Writer/Director Carney creates a film that evolves the arc of his two troubled main characters. And it builds to a special performance by team Flora and Son which becomes a charming, Irish, contemporary, musical fairy tale.
      Posted Sep 30, 2023
      The Creator (2023) Linda and Al Lerner For a movie about artificial intelligence this film isn’t very smart. The story and the script is a mixed-up mash-up of genres and specific movies with a lack of emotion.
      Posted Sep 29, 2023
      A Haunting in Venice (2023) Linda and Al Lerner With such a great cast, location and setting Branagh’s inscrutable Poirot is not nearly as evocative nor tongue-in-cheek entertaining. By the time the case wraps up, we found it more undaunting than haunting.
      Posted Sep 18, 2023
      Waiting for the Light to Change (2022) Linda and Al Lerner Tran has created a credible film about 20-somethings’ friendship, jealousy, and emotions taking stock as they come of age as adults. It can be fun, but also a tough rite of passage. Glad we’re not there anymore.
      Posted Sep 17, 2023
      My Big Fat Greek Wedding 3 (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Sometimes there are too mushy moments, cartoonish characters and comedic excess, but Vardalos has done a pretty good job crafting her passion project. This love letter to Greece is more like the original film and worth a big Opaa!
      Posted Sep 08, 2023
      Fremont (2023) Linda and Al Lerner We were somewhat reticent with the slow pace and melancholy of this film, but with Jalali’s direction, Anaita Wali Zada pulled us in with her thought-filled gaze.
      Posted Sep 07, 2023
      Nandor Fodor and the Talking Mongoose (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Director Adam Sigal draws you into the investigation wanting to know if Gef is really talkative and omniscient. Pegg and Driver play well together in this charming, but wacky absurd period piece about truth which is tested till the very end credits.
      Posted Aug 31, 2023
      Gran Turismo: Based on a True Story (2023) Linda and Al Lerner ...the outcome is predictable. Director Neill Blomkamp recreates exciting racing scenes but they become rather repetitive. The saving grace is the bond created by Archie Madekwe and David Harbour that gets this vehicle over the finish line.
      Posted Aug 25, 2023
      You Are So Not Invited to My Bat Mitzvah (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Adam Sandler has successfully mined impressive talent from his own family for an uneven but fun film steeped in Jewish traditions and values, family and friendship that predictably ends with heart. Now, where’s the party!
      Posted Aug 24, 2023
      Blue Beetle (2023) Linda and Al Lerner This film follows the same old superhero formula. One difference is that it emotionally draws heavily on the culture of Mexican family to create the backstory of the characters’ motivation.
      Posted Aug 19, 2023
      King on Screen (2022) Linda and Al Lerner This film reveals the witty personality and gallows humor of this prolific writer who works with directors adapting his horrifying stories that cause us to sleep with the lights on. See what directors and actors say about working with Stephen King.
      Posted Aug 16, 2023
      Match Me If You Can (2022) Linda and Al Lerner Reilly and Bethel exhibit chemistry for comedy through character miscommunication, much like those 1940’s rom coms. Slow to start, it’s a cute premise brought current using high speed internet and a series of clicks.
      Posted Aug 08, 2023
      Brother (2022) Linda and Al Lerner Although it takes place in the 90’s, Clement Virgo creates a well-crafted, superbly acted, sensitive yet powerful film that mirrors immigrant families, then and now, trying to live in communities without tension and fear.
      Posted Aug 05, 2023
      The Beanie Bubble (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Too Bad it’s not a better film. It’s an intriguing tale of the first collectible craze of the internet age. Beanie Baby mania may live again, but this Beanie Bubble has burst.
      Posted Aug 01, 2023
      Haunted Mansion (2023) Linda and Al Lerner We think Director Simien and writer Dippold, could have filled the film with more imaginative comedy and wit instead of all the nostalgia from the Parks’ ride. This film is another Disney stumble. Haunted Mansion is ghostly, but also, alas, ghastly.
      Posted Jul 28, 2023
      Stephen Curry: Underrated (2023) Linda and Al Lerner While we appreciate that he’s a private guy, Curry and director Nicks only pull back the curtain so much. We would have liked to see a more personal portrait, instead of so many basketball highlights and occasional scenes at home. But still worth a watch.
      Posted Jul 26, 2023
      Barbie (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Robbie infuses Barbie with the exuberance and joy we expected from the portrayal. But the descent into actual life issues is a surprise that the audience never suspects is coming. Gerwig’s visualization is a true feat, right down to Barbie's feet.
      Posted Jul 23, 2023
      Oppenheimer (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Riveting from beginning to end. Christopher Nolan’s meticulous direction, casting, writing and character development in this taut tale of scientific, philosophical, and political intrigue is visually astonishing.
      Posted Jul 21, 2023
      Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning, Part One (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Cruise and McQuarrie have outdone themselves. They clearly define the motivations for each character, not just create meticulous, mind-blowing action scenes. This summer blockbuster only whets our appetite for next year’s second Dead Reckoning.
      Posted Jul 11, 2023
      Joy Ride (2023) Linda and Al Lerner It’s supposed to be hard to watch at times which makes the humor and the emotional component more effective. If you can watch this movie without hearing yourself erupting in nervous laughter, there might be something wrong with you.
      Posted Jul 07, 2023
      Asteroid City (2023) Linda and Al Lerner All in the jam-packed cast get a spotlight to use their talents for these quirky characters. Anderson’s rambling film is everything from silly and absurd, mildly farcical, and ludicrous. But it’s also uniquely imaginative and fun!
      Posted Jul 05, 2023
      Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny (2023) Linda and Al Lerner This cast is great, but the action scenes become so long and overplayed, they become boring. Truly a movie that needs the audience to suspend disbelief. Good seeing Ford as Indy, back in the saddle again for one more wild ride. But hoping this is it.
      Posted Jun 29, 2023
      Elemental (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Pixar is getting back to what it does best, storytelling with beautiful animation and several messages. The animation team worked overtime making the main characters representing the elements stand out, showing vibrantly how Fire glows and Water flows.
      Posted Jun 16, 2023
      The Flash (2023) Linda and Al Lerner’s so cluttered with quick cuts of CG animation and constant loud blasts of crashing sounds, it’s hard to digest what you’re looking at. Go for the fun cameos, but for a film all about speed, this time line feels like forever.
      Posted Jun 13, 2023
      Past Lives (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Song’s directorial debut is a masterpiece of emotional restraint revealing multiple sides of love. Song hand-picked the cast which excels portraying this gripping story that has its light moments as well as intense drama in a clash of cultures over time.
      Posted Jun 13, 2023
      Flamin' Hot (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Whether the story is 100 per cent true or not, Longoria has created a feel good film showing Richard’s dream to tap into cultural tastes, could become a crunchy Flamin’ Hot phenomenon.
      Posted Jun 12, 2023
      Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Frantic editing following the characters as animation styles, color palettes and music are changing give this film a look all its own. This is a uniquely artistic, creative, well-written, witty, and playful piece of comic book style animation.
      Posted Jun 03, 2023
      BlackBerry (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Matt Johnson capably assembles a cool, chaotic R&D docudrama looking back at the Blackberry with tech savvy humor, ripe for the picking.
      Posted May 12, 2023
      Still: A Michael J. Fox Movie (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Michael J. Fox makes clear that he does not want anyone to throw him a pity party. Watching Guggenheim's well-crafted film shows how this consummate entertainer continues to defy the odds, leading a full life, acting and STILL going strong. 
      Posted May 10, 2023
      Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Come for the music and the visual effects, not so much for the disjointed depressing story. While The Guardians work to save the world, it’s too bad that James Gunn and the crew couldn’t save this movie.
      Posted May 05, 2023
      Peter Pan & Wendy (2023) Linda and Al Lerner The themes of childhood wonder, imagination and friendship all play out in a predictably mundane storyline. While Peter Pan and Wendy is worth streaming, this new re-telling of the well-worn fable may not make you want to crow.
      Posted May 02, 2023
      Sisu (2022) Linda and Al Lerner Nazis finally get what’s coming to them in this revenge action thriller: part Spaghetti Western, part WW II bloody, yet wildly entertaining adrenaline fix.
      Posted Apr 26, 2023
      Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret. (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Judy Blume waited more than 50 years before finding the right director to bring it to life. And with a cast that makes this film refreshingly human without being sappy. It’s a very lovingly candid adaptation that has definitely stood the test of time.
      Posted Apr 26, 2023
      Chevalier (2022) Linda and Al Lerner Williams and Robinson create a richly textured production with a superb cast led by Harrison, Jr, a good script and an astounding history, nearly erased. After centuries, good to see the Chevalier’s music get another play.
      Posted Apr 21, 2023
      Beau Is Afraid (2023) Linda and Al Lerner Phoenix’s committed performance displays a consistent and constant look of shock, yelling and whining throughout this comedy/horror film. It becomes not only predictable but repetitive played out over 3 very long hours.
      Posted Apr 21, 2023
      Paint (2023) Linda and Al Lerner This is a slow go. Even with such a good cast, the comedy is too subtle and one dimensional. Wilson and Watkins are capable of better comedy which could have created a more satisfying canvas built on better brush strokes
      Posted Apr 17, 2023
      Showing Up (2022) Linda and Al Lerner You have to be willing to wait for Reichardt and Williams’ calm collaboration that unwrap a total picture of the characters. Williams is hiding behind a sedate persona yet Showing Up, once again, projecting her versatility.
      Posted Apr 17, 2023
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