bullitt-burnout

Today in Movie History: October 17

For a supposedly quiet month, October is chock full of terrific movies. We’ll start with Bullitt, a movie that’s less a classic in and of itself than a classic car chase with a movie wrapped around it. The rest of the film is boilerplate cops-and-robbers stuff, but when Steve McQueen gets behind the wheel of that Mustang, something magic happens. Bullitt opened …

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Today in Movie History: June 23

A brutally full day in movie history always seems to be followed by a nearly empty one. Fortunately, today’s single entry — while a deeply flawed film in many ways — also ranks as one of the most fascinating in history. Tim Burton’s Batman arrived in an era when superhero films began and ended with Christopher Reeve, and initially, no one …

Beetlejuice-2

Today in Movie History: March 30

It’s all about the 80s today with a trio of iconic films  from that era. No one expected a movie like Beetlejuice to do anything when it first opened. Indeed, the question remains how the darn thing got made in the first place: a second-time director with a truly strange point of view given free rein to pursue his vision, and a star …

Snow White

Today in Movie History: December 21

There’s no question which movie tops our charts today: Walt Disney premiered Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs on this date in 1937, and transformed the entire animation field as a result. 78 years later, it’s still the greatest cartoon of all time: a stunning triumph in every sense of the word, cementing Disney’s fortunes and single-handedly creating the animated feature …

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Today in Movie History: July 22

And behold, the worst shall be first, and all the base and discarded of the cinematic universe will draw sustenance from its example. We’re talking about Ed Wood’s Plan 9 from Outer Space, justly celebrated as the worst movie ever made. Creaky sets, terrible acting, a plot that has to be seen to be believed, and the final onscreen appearance …

Bad Day

Today in Movie History: January 7

And then came that moment when we found ourselves staring eyeball to eyeball with the Nicolas-Cage-needs-money turd Season of the Witch — released today in 2011 — and said “what the heck, we’ll start the column with it!” We’re not proud, but there it is. (Incidentally, today is also Cage’s birthday. We hope he celebrates by watching one of his …