Tag Archives: Alex Winter

Would You Be Mine? Could You Be Mine?

Destroy All Neighbors

by Hope Madden

A film for anyone who squeezes creative passions into the hours outside other responsibilities, refuses the label “hobby” and still never manages to complete anything, Destroy All Neighbors lives that nightmare.

William (Jonah Ray) has been working and reworking the final song on his prog-rock album for ages. Years. He’s so close, but then the loudest, most aggressively weird neighbor moves in next door. Vlad (Alex Winter, who also produces) may have charmed William’s longsuffering girlfriend (Kiran Deol), but he’s pushing William to the brink of insanity. Who can get anything done with all that noise?!

William is that nonconfrontational nice guy who’s always being taken advantage of. But Vlad has pushed him too far. Which is why it will be so difficult to convince anyone that Vlad accidentally killed and dismembered his own self. But he did! Really!

Destroy All Neighbors delivers silly, sloppy horror comedy with the highly relevant message: maybe this is all your own fault. Ray (MST3K) drives the lunacy with an earnest performance. You kind of already know this guy. Hell, he could be you.

And that’s the real charm of Destroy All Neighbors. Director Josh Forbes, working from a script by Mike Benner, Jared Logan and Charles A. Pieper, isn’t wagging a finger of judgment. The finger is gently pointed inward.

The writing team comes from animation and comedy rather than horror, which may be why the film is so gleefully gory, no meanness in it. Whenever William does find his inner badass, the film makes sure he immediately regrets it.

A cameo from Kumail Nanjiani and the supporting goofiness from Lennon and Ryan Kattner as rock and roll has been Caleb Bang Jansen (say the whole name!) keep the tone silly.

Destroy All Neighbors is not a great movie. It’s definitely not a great horror movie. But it’s a light, weird, gentle reminder that you may be all that’s holding you back. (And also, loud neighbors kind of suck.)

Dr. Whoa

Bill & Ted Face the Music

by George Wolf

You know why Death (William Sadler) was really kicked out of Wyld Stallyns?

Well, I’d tell you, but that would take the number of laughs waiting for you in Bill & Ted latest romp down to two…maybe three.

It’s been almost 30 years since their Excellent Adventure gave way to the Bogus Journey, but Bill (Alex Winter) and Ted (Keanu Reeves) are still best buds. Now living in the suburbs, each has the wife that they brought back from Medieval England (Erinn Hayes, Jayma Mays), plus a daughter (Samara Weaving, Brigette Lundy-Paine) that is the younger version of their most excellent dad.

Though they still rock out, Ted is ready to hang up his guitar until the future comes calling.

It’s Kelly (Kristen Schaal), daughter of their old pal Rufus (George Carlin, thanks to a well-placed hologram), with news from the Great Ones. The boys have exactly 77 minutes to play their song that united the world, or reality will collapse.


While it’s nice to know Bill & Ted will finally achieve musical greatness, the world needs that song right now. So why not go into the future, steal it from themselves, then come back and get quantum physical?

Director Dean Parisot, who helped make Galaxy Quest an underrated cult classic, teams with original franchise writers Chris Matheson and Ed Solomon for a time-traveling ode to living in harmony. This time, the historical figures we meet are mainly musical (Mozart, Satchmo, Grohl), but while the journey is long on sweetness and good-natured stupidity, it just isn’t very funny.

After all these years, Reeves and Winter make an endearing pair of overgrown adolescents, and they do seem genuinely joyful about stepping back into that magical phone booth.

The joy that you get from Face the Music will likely match up perfectly with the amount of nostalgia you have for this franchise. The film’s present isn’t bad, either. Because theaters are opening again, and God knows we’re all longing for a simpler time right now.

For almost 90 minutes, Bill & Ted make sure we get one.