History, Legacy & Showmanship

“[T]he lasting impact of On Her Majesty’s Secret Service is that it showed that a James Bond film could be made without Sean Connery in the lead role. The producers maintained that audiences came to the films to see James Bond, not necessarily the actor playing him.” — Bruce Scivally

The Digital Bits is pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the 45th anniversary of the release of On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, the sixth cinematic James Bond adventure and, most notably, the first not to star Sean Connery as Agent 007.  [Read more here...]

“There was no way for Spielberg to top himself, and perhaps it is just as well that Last Crusade will indeed be Indy's last film. It would be too sad to see the series grow old and thin, like the James Bond movies.” — Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

The Digital Bits is pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the silver anniversary of the release of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, George Lucas & Steven Spielberg’s third entry in the popular Indiana Jones movie series starring Harrison Ford as everyone’s favorite archaeologist-adventurer.

The Bits celebrates the occasion with this retrospective featuring a compilation of box-office data that places the movie’s performance in context, quotes from well-known movie critics, production and exhibition information, and a list of the 70-millimeter “showcase” presentations.

The article also features an interview segment with a quartet of film historians (found on Page 2), who discuss the attributes of the movie and whether or not it has endured. [Read on here…]

“Somewhere under the sea and beyond your imagination is an adventure in fantasy”

The Digital Bits is pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the silver anniversary of the release of The Little Mermaid, The Walt Disney Company’s musical-fantasy based upon the classic Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale.

The movie, Disney’s 28th feature-length animated production and winner of two Academy Awards (for Alan Menken’s score and Menken & Howard Ashman’s song Under the Sea), was the most successful for the company on an initial theatrical release and sparked an animation renaissance for both the company and the film industry.  [Read more here...]

“I’ll be back!”

The Digital Bits is pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the 30th anniversary of The Terminator, James Cameron’s science fiction classic starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Linda Hamilton and Michael Biehn.

Originally produced by Hemdale and distributed by Orion Pictures, The Terminator was a low-budget production that caught the industry by surprise, grossing over ten times its cost and launching or elevating the careers of everyone involved, and spawning a successful franchise of movies, novels, comic books, video games, theme park attractions, and a television series.  [Read more here...]

“Written and Directed by Quentin Tarantino”

The Digital Bits is pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the 20th anniversary of Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction, one of the most talked-about, written-about and influential films of the last two decades.

For the occasion, The Bits features a Q&A with a trio of journalists who offer some thoughts on Tarantino’s revered film.  [Read more here...]

“Only Sean Connery in 1964 could pull off wearing a baby-blue terrycloth onesie and still make every woman in the audience breathe a little more deeply and every man want to be him.” — John Cork

The Digital Bits is pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the golden anniversary of the release of Goldfinger, the classic James Bond adventure starring Sean Connery as Agent 007 and directed by Guy Hamiton. Featuring an unforgettable villain, unforgettable sidekick, unforgettable gadgets, and a Bond Girl with an unforgettable name, Goldfinger, which premiered in London 50 years ago today, delighted audiences becoming the first Bond film to be a global phenomenon, ensuring more 007 films for decades to come.  [Read more here...]

“Sam!”

The Digital Bits is pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the golden anniversary of the premiere of Bewitched, the magical supernatural situation comedy starring Elizabeth Montgomery that ran on ABC from 1964 to 1972 and in syndication ever since. The enchanting series premiered 50 years ago this week, and for the occasion The Bits features a Q&A with a trio of Bewitched and television historians and authors, who offer their recollections and insight into the popular series.  [Read more here...]

“The most wonderful, the most delightful entertainment of your life!”

The Digital Bits is pleased to present this TWO PAGE retrospective column commemorating the golden anniversary of the release of Mary Poppins, Walt Disney’s popular and award-winning musical-fantasy starring Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke.  [Read on here…]

“The first time, it will dazzle your senses. The second time, you’ll see it for the first time.”

The Digital Bits is pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the 35th anniversary of the release of Apocalypse Now, Francis Ford Coppola’s award-winning Vietnam War epic.

The Bits marks the occasion with this retrospective article featuring a compilation of box-office data that helps place the film’s performance in context, quotes from a selection of movie critics, production and exhibition information, a list of the film’s original 70-millimeter presentations, and an interview segment.  [Read on here…]

“It has the personality not of a particular movie but of a product, of something arrived at by corporate decision.” — Vincent Canby, The New York Times

Blockbuster. Juggernaut. Game Changer.

The event, or tentpole, film was taken to new heights during the summer of 1989, and the industry hasn’t been the same since. Sure, there were hits — and megahits — before, but everything this did was new, unorthodox or amplified: mass-saturation marketing, title-less posters, narration-less trailers, loads of tie-in merchandise, dual soundtrack release, one-day-early sneak-preview screenings, anti-piracy electronic-coded release prints, shattered box-office records, home-video release while still in theaters, franchise. [Read on here…]

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Adam Jahnke

In 50 years or so, the @Criterion edition of The Interview will make a nice bookend with The Great Dictator.

by Adam Jahnke