History, Legacy & Showmanship

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Our own Michael Coate has just posted a new History, Legacy & Showmanship column here on The Bits, featuring a great look back at the Bond classic Thunderball on the film’s 50th anniversary! Thunderball is certainly one of our favorite films of the series around here, and to celebrate the occasion Michael has moderated a great roundtable discussion of film historians, including Jon Burlingame, Robert A. Caplen, James Chapman, John Cork, Lee Pfeiffer, Steven Jay Rubin, Graham Rye, and Bruce Scivally. It’s a fine piece, as always, so be sure to give it a look this afternoon.  [Read on here…]

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Thunderball will always be the ‘big one.’ When Bond was bigger than anything on the planet, except maybe the Beatles.” — Steven Jay Rubin

The Digital Bits is pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the golden anniversary of the release of Thunderball, the fourth cinematic James Bond adventure starring Sean Connery as Agent 007 and, notably, the first produced in widescreen and, when adjusted for inflation, the most successful entry in the series.  [Read on here...]

Wednesday, 16 December 2015 00:01

A Force to Be Reckoned With

Star Wars is a landmark film, a work of such soaring imagination that it will set standards for years to come.” — Bob Thomas, Associated Press

On the eve of the release of the eagerly-awaited Episode VII: The Force Awakens, The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship offer a look back at the original Star Wars, George Lucas’ legendary space opera that introduced the world to The Force and a host of memorable characters.  [Read on here...]

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Today’s update is later than usual (and it’s also Wednesday’s update too), but you’ll see why in a moment...

We’ve just spent the whole day working on a brand new History, Legacy & Showmanship column from our own Michael Coate, featuring a look back at the original 1977 theatrical release of Star Wars, in anticipation of this week’s long-anticipated release of The Force Awakens. Michael has produced an exhaustively-researched chronicle of the film’s debut theatrical run, featuring trivia, period review quotes, and a listing of all the original theatrical engagements around North America. He even rounds the column out with a great roundtable interview featuring historian and author Marcus Hearn (The Cinema of George Lucas), filmmaker Patrick Read Johnson (5-25-77), filmmaker and special edition producer Charles de Lauzirika (Crave, and most recently documentary content for Disney’s Star Wars Launch Bay exhibit), and filmmaker Kevin Rubio (Troops). It’s a great read, so do give it a look and enjoy!  [Read on here…]

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I am very hard at work on my review of The X-Files: The Complete Series on Blu-ray, so today’s update will be brief.

But our own Tim Salmons has turned in his Pick-Ups thoughts on Lionsgate’s outstanding Hannibal: Season Three on Blu-ray, complete with a superb batch of special features produced by our own friend Cliff Stephenson. Don’t miss it!  [Read on here…]

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[Editor’s Note: This article was intended to appear a year ago for the film’s 75th anniversary. Following a series of delays and cancellations, it’s being published now for the film’s 76th anniversary. And if you’re upset about the delay, well, frankly, my dear readers, I don’t give a damn.]

“Never in our lifetime have eyes beheld its equal”

The Digital Bits is pleased to present this retrospective article commemorating the 75th anniversary of the release of Gone With the Wind, David O. Selznick’s acclaimed motion picture adaptation of Margaret Mitchell’s best-selling novel of the Old South and which starred Clark Gable as Rhett Butler and Vivian Leigh as Scarlett O’Hara.  [Read on here...]

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Our own Michael Coate kicks things off today here at The Bits with a brand new History, Legacy & Showmanship column here at The Digital Bits, this one featuring a great look back at the James Bond film GoldenEye on the 20th anniversary of its original release. The piece includes a great roundtable interview of film historian experts, including Robert A. Caplen, James Chapman, John Cork, Bill Desowitz, Lisa Funnell, Mark O’Connell, Lee Pfeiffer, and Bruce Scivally. Don’t miss it!  [Read on here…]

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“Had GoldenEye failed, that would have been it for 007.” — John Cork

The Digital Bits is pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the 20th anniversary of the release of GoldenEye, the 17th (official) cinematic James Bond adventure and, most notably, the first to star Pierce Brosnan as Agent 007.

As with our previous 007 articles (available hereherehere, and here), The Bits continues the series with this retrospective featuring a Q&A with an esteemed group of James Bond authorities who discuss the virtues and shortcomings of GoldenEye and analyze whether or not the passage of time has been kind to the film. [Read on here...]

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All right, this morning’s post is a quick one, but we do have some interesting announcements and street date confirmations for you today…

First up, 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment has set Mistress America for release on 12/1, followed by Transporter: Refueled on 12/8, Fantastic Four on 12/15, and Hitman: Agent 47 on 12/29, all on both Blu-ray and DVD.  [Read on here…]

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We’ve got a couple things for you today...

First up, our own Michael Coate has just posted a new History, Legacy & Showmanship column featuring a look back at Disney’s animated classic Fantasia on the occasion of the film’s 75th anniversary. It includes a new interview with film historian Jeff Kurtti. Do give it a look.

Also today, we have a pair of new Blu-ray reviews: my thoughts on Lionsgate’s new Mr. Holmes, directed by Bill Condon and starring Ian McKellen as Sherlock Holmes. And we have Doogan’s thoughts on Akira Kurosawa’s terrific Ikiru, in honor of Criterion’s new Blu-ray release which streets on 11/24. Both films are terrific and the discs are well worth your attention. Enjoy the reviews.  [Read on here…]

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