Movies

Field of Dreams

History of Field of Dreams: A Father’s Day Treat

By billpetro / June 17, 2022 /

HISTORY OF FIELD OF DREAMS: A Father’s Day Treat One of my all-time favorite movies is not an action movie, a science fiction movie, a comic book blockbuster, or a fantasy film. It’s a baseball movie. Or is it? Is it a movie about Berkeley, Iowa, Fenway Park, or America? It’s all of them, and…

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Star Wars

History of Star Wars: Premiered 45 Years Ago

By billpetro / May 25, 2022 /

HISTORY OF STAR WARS The original Star Wars movie premiered on May 25, 1977. Long ago, in a galaxy far, far away… in Berkeley, in November 1976, I picked up a new science fiction novel called “Star Wars: From the Adventures of Luke Skywalker” by George Lucas. I did not know at the time that…

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The Godfather

History of The Godfather: 50 Years Ago

By billpetro / April 28, 2022 /

HISTORY OF THE GODFATHER: 50 YEARS AGO In March of 1972, fifty years ago, the Francis Ford Coppola film, The Godfather premiered. Based on a screenplay by Coppola and the author of the original novel, Mario Puzo (who together won the Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay), it had been optioned by Paramount executive Peter Bart when…

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Peter Pan

History of Peter Pan: the Story Behind the Disney Classic

By billpetro / February 5, 2022 /

HISTORY OF PETER PAN All of this has happened before, and it will all happen again.   So begins my favorite Walt Disney animated movie, Peter Pan, which debuted 69 years ago today on February 5, 1953. The original movie poster said: “It will live in your heart forever” …and indeed it has. Why was…

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die hard

Is Die Hard Really A Christmas Movie?

By billpetro / December 11, 2021 /

IS DIE HARD REALLY A CHRISTMAS MOVIE? Scholars and historians have debated for centuries the question “Is Die Hard a Christmas Movie?” Or at least during the last three decades since the movie was released. This is why readers have turned to me, your friendly neighborhood historian, to wrestle with this age-old question and help…

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Dune

Movie Review: Dune

By billpetro / October 24, 2021 /

MOVIE REVIEW: DUNE   Spice!     I met Frank Herbert, author of Dune, over 40 years ago at “Comics and Comix” a premier comic and book store in Berkeley that was a favorite haunt of mine at the time. Of course, I got him to sign my paperback, but he was interested in talking…

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No Time To Die

Movie Review: No Time To Die

By billpetro / October 15, 2021 /

MOVIE REVIEW: NO TIME TO DIE This James Bond film is the 25th in the Eon Productions canon and the last for the actor Daniel Craig. But this is not the end of the almost 60-year film franchise. It is an above-average James Bond flick and an immensely satisfying conclusion to Daniel Craig’s tenure as…

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Large Enterprise

History of Star Trek: 55 Years Ago and Today

By billpetro / September 8, 2021 /

HISTORY OF STAR TREK Star Trek premiered on NBC TV on September 8, 1966… 55 years ago. It is my favorite show; I was glued to the TV for the first episode and every one after that. It had a significant influence on my life in my choice of a career in technology. The show…

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The Rise of Skywalker

Movie Review: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker [No Plot Spoilers]

By billpetro / December 20, 2019 /

MOVIE REVIEW: STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER [No Plot Spoilers] When George Lukas originally discussed Star Wars, he intended it to be a series of three trilogies. He started with the middle trilogy, beginning with Star Wars (my history on it here,) later called Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope. He followed that…

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Movie Review: Star Wars: The Last Jedi

By billpetro / December 15, 2017 /

MOVIE REVIEW: STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI For over 40 years, Lucasfilm has brought us popcorn movies extraordinaire. The Last Jedi is no exception. I realize many readers will not read this review until they’ve seen the movie, even with the promise of no plot spoilers. Let me just say this: “Yule love it!” The…

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Rogue One

Movie Review: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

By billpetro / December 16, 2016 /

MOVIE REVIEW: ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY In many respects, this was a more exciting and thrilling movie than the previous Star Wars: Episode VII, The Force Awakens” It was more heroic, noble, and self-sacrificing. Unencumbered by previous storylines, it was able to introduce new characters into an existing historical narrative. Often, the new…

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Movie Review: Star Trek Beyond

By billpetro / July 24, 2016 /

MOVIE REVIEW: STAR TREK BEYOND It has been now almost 50 years since Star Trek first premiered on NBC TV in September of 1966. See my history of Star Trek here. After several television series and movies we are now treated to the 13th feature film Star Trek Beyond. While this is not the best…

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