My Two Cents

Displaying items by tag: The Empire Strikes Back

Evening, folks. We’ve got a quick news update for you here today at the site.

But first, a new disc review: Tim has just posted his thoughts on William Lustig’s Vigilante (1982) on 4K Ultra HD from the good folks at Blue Underground. And it sounds like it’s a pretty terrific release if you like the film, which stars Robert Forster and Fred Williamson. Do check it out.

Also a reminder today: We posted a new History, Legacy & Showmanship column from our own Michael Coate on Friday—a piece that was delayed from the very end of 2020 due to all of the site maintenance we’ve been doing over the past several weeks. This one is a look back at the early 70mm cut of The Empire Strikes Back, featuring a new roundtable discussion with historian and soundtrack producer Mike Matessino along with director Saul Pincus. We think you’ll really enjoy it, so do give that a look here if you missed it.

Now then... there’s not a lot of release news to report today, but we do have a few things worth mentioning. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

Hey everyone! Well... another week is officially in the can and, as promised, I’ve got an update for you on some release news and whatnot.

First up, I wanted to alert you to a 4K Ultra HD deal: Amazon currently has Bong Joon-ho’s Parasite available in 4K for just $11.00 for a limited time only. So click here to order a copy if you’re interested.

Also today, we’ve got a great new History, Legacy & Showmanship column from our own Michael Coate—one that was delayed from the very end of 2020 due to all of the site maintenance we’ve been doing over the past several weeks. This one is a terrific look back at the early 70mm cut of The Empire Strikes Back, featuring a new roundtable discussion with historian and soundtrack producer Mike Matessino along with director Saul Pincus. We think you’ll really enjoy it, so do give that a look here.

Now then, in announcement news today, Severin Films has revealed that it’s working on a new 4K Ultra HD release of Alejandro Jodorowsky’s Santa Sangre (1989) that’s due on 4/27. The title will also be released on Blu-ray and DVD. You can see the cover artwork for the 4K at left. Click here to pre-order on Amazon: 4K, Blu-ray, DVD.

But that’s not the only 4K catalog title we now know is coming from our retail sources... [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents
Thursday, 31 December 2020 09:00

Empire @ 40: Remembering the Early 70MM Cut

“On my thirteenth viewing, which was the first time I saw it at a different theater than the one I’d gone to since opening day, I knew there were noticeable changes when the final scene began with different music.” — film music historian Mike Matessino

The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present a continuation of our 40th anniversary coverage of the release of The Empire Strikes Back, the middle act of George Lucas’s original Star Wars trilogy and one of the most celebrated and beloved sequels of all time. Part One of our Empire 40th coverage appeared back in May.

George Lucas’s penchant for making revisions to his work is about as legendary as his movies. The majority of Lucas’s alterations have occurred years after his films’ original releases. With The Empire Strikes Back, however, the first (of several rounds of) revisions were actually made while the movie was in first release, and it is this lesser-known aspect of the otherwise very-well-known production that is the subject of this column. [Read on here...]

The Empire Strikes Back should be remembered as one of the greatest films of all time!” — Skywalking through Neverland co-host Richard Woloski

The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the 40th anniversary of the release of The Empire Strikes Back, the middle act of George Lucas’s original Star Wars trilogy and one of the most celebrated and beloved sequels of all time.

The Empire Strikes Back (aka Star Wars: Episode VThe Empire Strikes Back) was directed by Irvin Kershner (The Flim-Flam Man, Eyes of Laura Mars) and starred Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher, reprising their popular roles of Luke Skywalker, Han Solo and Princess Leia, respectively.

As well, Empire featured returning cast members Anthony Daniels (C-3PO), Kenny Baker (R2-D2), Peter Mayhew (Chewbacca), David Prowse (Darth Vader), and an uncredited James Earl Jones as the voice of Darth Vader. Newly introduced in Empire were Lando Calrissian (played by Billy Dee Williams) and Yoda (performed by Frank Oz and a team of muppeteers). [Read on here...]

[Editor’s Note: Be sure to follow us on Twitter @thedigitalbits @BillHuntBits and on Facebook here and here. And you can help support The Bits by pre-ordering Blu-rays and other items from Amazon through this link.]

All right... yesterday’s editorial column on the new 4K Ultra HD format was a lot of work as you can imagine, but I’ve been very gratified at the positive reaction to it. If you missed it, you can find it here. I’m going to have more 4K coverage and reviews soon, but I’m just trying to balance it all out with the regular Blu-ray news and whatnot.

On that score, we have a pair of new Blu-ray reviews for you to check out today, including Tim Salmons’ thoughts on The Zero Boys from Arrow Video, as well as Jim Hemphill’s take on In the French Style from Twilight Time. Both titles are now available and are well worth a look.

Also today, in case you missed it when we posted it earlier this week, our own Mario Boucher has delivered a great new Inside Cinema column on the subject of “Duelity” in modern cinema. I think you’ll find it well worth a read, so do check it out here.  [Read on here…]

Published in My Two Cents

The Empire Strikes Back joins The Godfather, Part II as one of the rarest of films—a sequel that lives up to and expands upon its original.” — Gene Siskel, Chicago Tribune

There is no question this year is a huge one for fans of Star Wars. While the whole galaxy awaits Episode VII: The Force Awakens, let us not forget this year also marks the 35th anniversary of The Empire Strikes Back, one of the most revered sequels of all time. The Digital Bits celebrates the occasion with this retrospective featuring a compilation of box-office data that places Empire’s performance in context, quotes from well-known movie critics, production and exhibition information, a list of the opening-week, limited-market theaters that were the first anywhere to play the movie, and an interview segment with a group of filmmakers and historians who discuss the attributes of the movie and examine why Empire is frequently labeled the fan favorite.  [Read on here...]

Over the weekend, I’ve had a mighty interesting experience. Thanks to a friend in the industry, I’ve had the opportunity to revisit Star Wars on Blu-ray as I first experienced it many years ago – unaltered, in 720p high-definition, and with the original audio mixes. As some of you may know, I’m speaking of Harmy’s infamous “despecialized” edition of Star Wars – the most recent 2.5 version (early 1.0 versions of The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi are available online too – this thread at Original Trilogy.com is a good place to start).  [Read on here…]

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