History, Legacy & Showmanship

Dazed and Confused is an admirably nuanced take on the teen movie that was congruent with the fresh wave of nineties entries in the genre.” – Thomas A. Christie, author of The Cinema of Richard Linklater

The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the 25th anniversary of the release of Dazed and Confused, the coming-of-age comedy revolving around the final day of school in 1976 in a small Texas town. Directed by Richard Linklater (Slacker, Before Sunrise, Boyhood) – and featuring a large ensemble cast including Jason London, Joey Lauren Adams, Michelle Burke, Wiley Wiggins, and notable early-career performances by Ben Affleck, Milla Jovovich, Matthew McConaughey, and Parker Posey – Dazed and Confused opened 25 years ago this month, and for the occasion The Bits features a Q&A with author, film historian and Richard Linklater biographer Thomas A. Christie. [Read more here...]

“It takes a filmmaker as deeply imaginative, but also technically savvy as Steven Spielberg to orchestrate and bring [all of the elements] together into a cohesive whole that works with his intricate vision as a storyteller, in both moments and big picture. There are other filmmakers who would have made wonderful adaptations of the Crichton book, no doubt, but the project landed in the right, highly skilled hands, heart and imagination.” — Steven Awalt, author of Steven Spielberg and Duel: The Making of a Film Career

The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the silver anniversary of the release of Jurassic Park, Steven Spielberg’s popular and franchise-inspiring adaptation of Michael Crichton’s best-selling novel starring Sam Neill, Laura Dern, Jeff Goldblum and Richard Attenborough and which showcased groundbreaking and award-winning visual effects and audio. [Read on here...]

“The film may as well have been officially titled Francis Ford Coppola’s Dracula, because it so unmistakably bears the stamp of its director.” — Dracula FAQ: All That’s Left to Know about the Count from Transylvania author Bruce Scivally

The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the 25th anniversary of the release of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, Francis Ford Coppola’s take on the classic horror icon featuring Gary Oldman in the title role.

Bram Stoker’s Dracula, which also starred Winona Ryder, Anthony Hopkins and Keanu Reeves — and winner of numerous awards including three Oscars and five Saturns — opened 25 years ago this autumn. For the occasion, The Bits features a Q&A with film historian Bruce Scivally, who discusses the film’s virtues, shortcomings and influence. [Read on here...]

“[The failure of Far and Away] taught Ron Howard that even in a star-driven vehicle, the story must be strong, and that action and character elements must be well integrated in order to achieve a successful outcome.” — Ron Howard: From Mayberry to the Moon… and Beyond author Beverly Gray

The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present this retrospective article commemorating the silver anniversary of the release of Far and Away, Ron Howard’s 70mm Irish immigrant epic starring Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman. [Read on here...]

“[Batman Returns is] the first auteur superhero movie. I think the execs at Warners realized that you just let Tim Burton alone and let him make a Tim Burton movie and people will see it in droves.” — Danse Macabre: 25 Years of Danny Elfman and Tim Burton author Jeff Bond

The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the silver anniversary of the release of Batman Returns, Tim Burton’s follow-up to the immensely popular 1989 Dark Knight adventure, starring Michael Keaton, Danny DeVito and Michelle Pfeiffer. [Read on here...]

“Cameron’s achievement isn’t only technical. He’s using all the not-so-cheap thrills of a violent genre to make a movie with an antiviolence message, and the wonder of T2 is that he pulls it off without looking silly.” — David Ansen, Newsweek

The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present this retrospective article commemorating the silver anniversary of the release of Terminator 2: Judgment Day, James Cameron’s sci-fi/action follow-up to his 1984 surprise hit featuring Arnold Schwarzenegger in perhaps his finest role. The most popular film of 1991 also featured Linda Hamilton (reprising her role as Sarah Connor) plus Robert Patrick’s memorable turn as the T-1000 and Edward Furlong as the young John Connor.

T2, the winner of four Academy Awards (including Visual Effects, Sound Mixing, Sound Editing and Makeup), opened 25 years ago this week, and to commemorate the occasion The Bits features a compilation of box-office data that places Cameron’s “violent movie about peace” in context, as well as a collection of passages from vintage film reviews and a list of the film’s “six-track” showcase presentations.  [Read on here...]

“I think the insane nature of the material pushed everyone to really innovate and react with their most deft artistic muscle.” — Glenn Kenny

The Digital Bits is pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the silver anniversary of the release of GoodFellas, Martin Scorsese’s revered crime drama starring Robert De Niro, Ray Liotta, and Joe Pesci in an Oscar-winning role.

The film, based upon Nicholas Pileggi’s book Wiseguy and which also starred Lorraine Bracco and Paul Sorvino, opened 25 years ago this week.

For the occasion The Bits features a Q&A with a trio of film historians and authors who offer their recollections and insight into the acclaimed film. [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…]

“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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