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Alan Cerny

Alan Cerny has been writing about film for more than 20 years, for such sites as Ain't It Cool News, CHUD, Birth Movies Death, and ComingSoon. He is a member of the Houston Film Critics Society since 2011. STAR WARS biased. Steven Spielberg once called Alan a "very good writer" and Alan has the signed letter to prove it, so it must be true.

Soul Review: The New Pixar Film Coming to Disney+

Pixar films at their best are wildly imaginative, speaking to children and adults alike. On paper, most Pixar films have basic scenarios with complex themes – toys that come to life or the monsters under the bed become surrogates for parenthood; a family of superheroes gives way to themes of isolation, self-worth, and our place …

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Bill and Ted Face the Music Review

It is perhaps fitting that, like the rest of us right now living through (gesticulating wildly) All This, Bill S. Preston, Esquire (Alex Winter) and Ted “Theodore” Logan (Keanu Reeves) in Bill and Ted Face the Music are pining for simpler, happier times. After all, their greatest moments were 25 years ago, when they saw …

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The King of Staten Island Review

Judd Apatow has a long history of “Lovable Losers” in his work. All the way from Freaks and Geeks to The 40-Year-Old Virgin, even in films like This Is 40 and Trainwreck, Apatow tells stories about broken, juvenile characters who are dragged, kicking and screaming, into the real world. Apatow’s also been accused of glossing …

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Beastie Boys Story Review: The Apple TV+ Documentary

Spring, 1987. I’m a senior in high school. I’m sitting in the back seat of my friend Bill’s lime-green Chevy Nova. We’re in the parking lot of a Kroger’s, and we’re all a little drunk. Some of us more than others; we’ve been drinking beers, and right before we left the party at Heather’s house, …

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Onward Review: Pratt and Holland Go on a Fantasy Quest

There are particular buttons in a movie, that when I see them, automatically elicit an emotional response. It’s Pavlovian – if you make a movie about fathers and sons, for example, I am almost certain to react with tears. It’s just hardwired into my moviegoing DNA. Thus, Pixar Animation Studios’ Onward was almost guaranteed to make …

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The Invisible Man Review: As Disturbing as It Is Frightening

Horror, more than any other genre, it seems, has its hand directly on the pulse of the here and now. It has to be – our fears are changing and evolving, even while those base instincts remain the same. Our monsters may come with different, more modern costumes, but they are still monsters. The Invisible …

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The Call of the Wild Review: Come for the Dog, Stay for Ford

Serious fans of Jack London’s The Call of the Wild novel will likely be disappointed in the latest adaptation by 20th Century Studios (formerly 20th Century Fox, now owned by Disney, and one of Fox’s final productions). The novel is surely dated and somewhat problematic now, with its treatment of North American indigenous people and the …

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Birds of Prey Review: Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn Is Back

A funny thing happened on the way to my press screening to Birds of Prey (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) (and if you think I’m typing that title full-on again in this review, well, we’ll see how the word count goes), and I blame myself entirely. I didn’t know that Birds of Prey …

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Bad Boys for Life Review: Will Smith and Martin Lawrence Are Back!

January tends to be a dumping ground for movies. Everyone’s wrapped up in awards talk, and studios are busy pushing their films for Oscar consideration. Sometimes as a critic I wonder if studios can walk and chew gum at the same time, much less release a big budget action film in January while trying to …

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Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker Review

As someone who was there at the beginning that fateful summer of 1977, I’ve rode the highs and the lows of the Star Wars saga over the years. During that time, there have been, shall we say, some truths I’ve clung to that depended greatly on my own point of view. I’ve reevaluated these films so …

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A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood Review

To use a baseball metaphor, the idea of Tom Hanks playing Fred Rogers is a lot like a 70 mile-per-hour fastball pitched right across the plate to someone like Hank Aaron or Mickey Mantle – you just know that little white stitcher is long gone. Who else but Hanks to play Fred Rogers? You could …

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Ford v Ferrari Review: Damon and Bale in a Genuine Crowdpleaser

In the trailer for Ford v Ferrari, Carroll Shelby (Matt Damon) takes Henry Ford Jr. (Tracy Letts) on something of a test ride in the new race car that has been built to attempt to beat Ferrari at the 24 Hours of Le Mans race in France. Shelby drives very fast, making hairpin turns, the race …

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Zombieland: Double Tap Review

Unlike the Twinkie (supposedly), zombie movies don’t seem to have an expiration date. And so we get Zombieland: Double Tap, a 10-years-later sequel to 2009’s Zombieland that, at first blush, doesn’t seem to be a movie we necessarily needed or wanted. Ruben Fleischer’s original film was an enjoyable comedy, with some fun, gnarly zombie kills and …

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Parasite Review – Fantastic Fest 2019

Conflict is the basis of drama, and there are few dramatic conflicts as powerful as the exploration of class. Everyone alive feels that conflict – the societal obligations for those who are not well off to rise above their status, while those who are already well off strive to keep their positions while, consciously or …

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Knives Out Review – Fantastic Fest 2019

Rian Johnson’s Knives Out is an engine of perfect entertainment. From the opening moments, we are swept into the story and characters, and it feels completely confident and effortless. It’s old fashioned in all the best ways, but also has modern sensibilities and themes that give the film weight and substance. The murder mystery, as a …

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The Lighthouse Review – Fantastic Fest 2019

Robert Eggers’ The Witch (or The VVitch if you prefer) is a polarizing film. Now that we have a little distance from it, and now that we’ve seen something of the trends happening in the horror genre since then, that film is a moment in independent film – that there are stories to be told in …

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Dolemite Is My Name Review – Fantastic Fest 2019

Eddie Murphy is back. The best Eddie Murphy movies are those where it feels like he has something to prove. It’s been a few years since we’ve had a completely engaged Eddie. His strongest films have always been those when Eddie has a little glint in his eye, right before he lays his cards on …

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Synchronic Review – Fantastic Fest 2019

These days, science fiction films aren’t necessarily about the ideas, but the spectacle.  Many have several hundred million-dollar budgets, gigantic CGI moments, and actors who work against green screens all day playing pretend on a wide scale. And while those films done right are perfectly enjoyable, it feels like something has been lost. Great character …

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