The first is a look back at Gene Kelly’s classic Hollywood musical Hello, Dolly!, which stars Barbra Streisand, Walter Matthau, and Michael Crawford. Michael details the original 70mm roadshow engagements and speaks with film historian Matthew Kennedy about the musical and its legacy.
And new for this morning is a great retrospective interview on Robert Wise’s ground-breaking Star Trek: The Motion Picture in honor of the film’s 40th anniversary. Michael and occasional Bits columnist and Inglorious Trekspert Mark A. Altman look back at the film and its place in Trek and science fiction cinema history.
While we’re on the topic of science fiction cinema, we also want to call your attention to an amazing new film series running in January (starting on Sunday, 1/5) on the Criterion Channel. Seventies Sci-Fi gathers 18 New Hollywood gems for your viewing pleasure, including No Blade of Grass (Cornel Wilde, 1970), A Clockwork Orange (Stanley Kubrick, 1971), The Omega Man (Boris Sagal, 1971), THX 1138 (George Lucas, 1971), Z.P.G. (Michael Campus, 1972), Westworld (Michael Crichton, 1973), Soylent Green (Richard Fleischer, 1973), Dark Star (John Carpenter, 1974), The Terminal Man (Mike Hodges, 1974), Rollerball (Norman Jewison, 1975), A Boy and His Dog (L. Q. Jones, 1975), Death Race 2000 (Paul Bartel, 1975), Shivers (David Cronenberg, 1975), The Ultimate Warrior (Robert Clouse, 1975), Logan’s Run (Michael Anderson, 1976), God Told Me To (Larry Cohen, 1976), Demon Seed (Donald Cammell, 1977), and Mad Max (George Miller, 1979). Now THAT is a series worth your time. Don’t miss it. Here’s a preview...
Finally today, and also on the sci-fi theme, we have sad news to report: The legendary concept artist and futurist Syd Mead has died. You will certainly know his iconic design work from such films as Blade Runner, Blade Runner 2049, Aliens, Tron, Star Trek: The Motion Picture, Mission to Mars, Short Circuit, and more. His designs also directly inspired the look of Tesla’s new Cybertruck (and Musk just paid tribute to him here on Twitter). Mead showed us a future worth living in, and also possible futures worth avoiding. I was fortunate enough meet him on a number of occasions, and once had the privilege of chatting with him for over an hour about his work on Blade Runner over drinks. I’m also honored to have called him a friend via social media. His work will long endure. Mead was 86. You can read more about him here on The Hollywood Reporter and here on Car Design News. Be sure also to check out his website here.
And that’s it for 2019. We’ll be back later this week to kick off 2020 with new disc reviews, special features, and the usual Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K news, along with all the announcements from CES 2020.
In the meantime, from all of us here at The Digital Bits, know that we love and appreciate each and every one of you, our readers, both new and old. We wish you all have a very safe, prosperous, and Happy New Year with your family and friends!