Macintosh and Its Movies

If you use a Macintosh, you know that its 30th anniversary is today, January 24th. In celebration, a number of original Apple employees have come together to organize the Macintosh Thirtieth Anniversary Event to be held at the Flint Center tomorrow night, the original location where the Macintosh was introduced.

What I find curious about the computer that never should have succeeded is how many movies have been made to chronicle it’s development and revolution. They range from movies about the company, Apple Computer, Inc. to it’s most celebrated figure head Steve Jobs, to the people who gave it its life. Below I have attempted to list all the movies that exist that cover the Macintosh.

The most amazing movie concerning the Macintosh was created by Apple itself. Created in 1988, Pencil Test is the most engaging story you will see about the Macintosh! Enjoy!

Now, here are the movies I found that chronicle the history of it all!

Steve Jobs the movieSteve Jobs Consciously Genius (Documentary) Unreleased/ In production.
Based on autobiography by Walter Isaacson. There’s very little information available about this upcoming documentary.

You can read more about the author on Wikipedia.

Jobs the movie

Jobs (2013)
“Jobs, a biographical film about Steve Jobs, from 1974 to 2001.” Askton Kutcher plays Steve Jobs, Josh Gad as Steve Wozniak, and a whole bunch of other famous actors who play a whole bunch of other Apple employees. This movie received a 5.9 rating on IMDb and a 27% on the Tomatometer at Rotten Tomatoes.

visionarygenius-imdbwebSteve Jobs:  iGenius (Original Title: Steve Jobs: Visionary Genius) (2012)
A one hour documentary on Mr. Steve Jobs that received a 5.1 rating from IMDb, linked above.

There are no reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and I have not seen this movie.

one-last-thing-imdb-webSteve Jobs: One Last Thing (2011)
A PBS documentary that is “an intimate portrait of the life of Mr. Jobs, through interviews with colleagues and others who knew Jobs.” “The man who always gave us, ‘One More Thing.’ ” You can see the whole movie on YouTube.

This documentary received a 6.8 rating on IMDb.

Lost Interview CoverSteve Jobs: The Lost Interview (Published in 2011, but created in 1995.)
A 70 minute interview with Steve Jobs by Bob Cringely (Mark Stephens) while he was running NeXT. Pieces of this were used in Triumph of the Nerds.

This “movie” received a 7.9 rating at IMDb and 100% on the Tomatometer.

macheads-imdb-webMacHeads The Movie (2009)
This one is my favorites, but I’m biased because I’m in the movie! The up close and personal views of the Macintosh fan community, which features interviews with Apple former employees and many of us Mac devotees. IMDb gives this one a 5.0 rating, but that’s
because those who aren’t in the movie are jealous. The original site for the movie doesn’t seem particularly functional anymore.

welcome-to-macintosh-imdb-wbWelcome to Macintosh (2008)
The documentary for the rest of us. “The type of film that’s aimed at a small segment of the population.” … “only the most diehard of fans will want to sit through the entire thing.” Review by FilmThreat. Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak are among the missing in this film, but a number of other original employees are interviewed. IMDb gives this documentary a 6.1 rating.

pirates-of-silicon-valleywebPirates of Silicon Valley (1999)
Movie based on the book  Fire in the Valley: The Making of The Personal Computer by Paul Freiberger and Michael Swaine. It chronicles the birth of the personal computer. It stars Noah Wyle as Steve Jobs, Joey Slotnick as Steve Wozniak, and Anthony Michael Hall as Bill Gates. (Trivia: At Macworld 1999 Noah Wyle opened the conference keynote instead of Jobs.) This film receives a 7.2 rating from IMDb and an 89% from the Tomatometer.

triumphofthenerds-imdbwebTriumph of the Nerds: The Rise of Accidental Empires (1996)
Based on the 1992 book by Mark Stephens aka Robert X. Cringely, this three-hour PBS documentary can be found in pieces on YouTube. It covers the history of the personal computer from WWII to 1995, so it’s not just about Apple, but you get the whole shebang. It includes footage from Gary Kildall who created CP/M and Douglas Adams, plus a whole host of familiar faces from Apple and Microsoft. While I started to watch this, it began with such poorly researched facts, that I bagged it after 2 minutes. Feel free to watch the first of six parts on YouTube  or watch it on PBS.

And last, but not least, the pièce du résistance:
Own-a-Mac – The Movie (1987)
A Macintosh SE sales movie created or commisioned by Apple Computer, Inc. This 18 min. movie has to be one of the worst commercials I’ve ever seen and I’d never seen it before! It pretty much predicted the popularity of cats on the future web! (CAT = Contacts, Activities, Time.)

“All Macintosh applications have a consistent interface.” Oh for those days of consistency!

(All movie cover images courtesy of IMDb.)

About ileneh

I am a Macintosh expert, writer and photographer. I have published many articles on Apple related products, but I cut my writer's teeth producing grants and market research reports when the Web was just something a spider made. I've also worked as a photographer, dancer and social worker. ilene's Machine was born in 2000 when I realized everything I did involved some kind of machine. First, my answering machine, next a Vic 20, then a Mac 128. Add a variety of Macintosh machines and iOS devices over the years and before you know it, you have reached ilene's Machine. Please leave a message!
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3 Responses to Macintosh and Its Movies

  1. Roy T. Sniffen says:

    Wonderful stuff. Bought the original Mac in 1984 and have never regretted the choice, even though the sales person so badly wanted me to buy an IBM PCjr. I remember him telling me I could trust IBM, they had a track record, and Apple was only a little more than a garage band. But I loved the graphics and the feel of it, so I went my own way. Great decision, eh?


  2. Peter says:

    I believe that was done on Apple’s Cray. I assume they don’t have that anymore.


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