Apple Lisa documentary will tell the story of Cupertino’s most important ‘flop’

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Apple prototypes
In retrospect, the Lisa was pretty darn important for Apple.
Photo: CNBC

A new documentary called Before Macintosh: The Apple Lisa promises to tell the story of one of Apple’s most important flops.

Directed by computer historian (and Apple collector) David Greelish, the movie will feature interviews with key players in the machine’s development. It also will place the Lisa in its proper context — as one of the most influential computers of all time.

Access a massive streaming library of world-class documentaries [Deals]

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Documentary streaming
Watch award-winning documentaries with CuriosityStream for $2 a month
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

With the endless hours of videos out there, it’s easy to fall deep into a YouTube rabbit hole or binge watch an entire season of reality TV on Netflix. But let’s be honest, that’s often not a very enriching experience. So if you need a regular video fix, it might as well be with content worth watching.

Best science and tech documentaries of 2018 [Year in Review]

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Year in Review Best Documentaries 2018
Here's some holiday viewing for you.
Photo: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

Cult of Mac Year in Review 2018 Do you want to celebrate the end of another year by relaxing in front of a great informative documentary? Nobody would blame you! Fortunately, 2018 was a great year for tech- and science-focused factual filmmaking.

Here are our choices for the best science and technology documentaries 2018 had to offer.

General Magic tells story of Apple spinoff that almost changed the world

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General Magic documentary tells story of the iPhone that never was!
The iPhone that never was!
Photo: Spellbound Productions

How do you follow a project like the Macintosh? A high-flying Apple spinoff called General Magic tried to answer that question in the early 1990s.

After revolutionizing the personal computer, a team of ambitious ex-Apple engineers set out to build a connected touchscreen mobile device that prefigured the iPhone by 25 years. Their startup, General Magic, became one of the hottest ventures in Silicon Valley — before it all came crashing down.

“That period is one of the most important in computing history,” Sarah Kerruish, co-director of new documentary General Magic, told Cult of Mac. “It’s when handhelds were first realized, and when we saw the first early stages of the internet. General Magic combines these profoundly important threads in technology.”

Apple pays at least $1 million for Ed Sheeran documentary

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Ed Sheeran
Ed Sheeran, an English singer, songwriter, and guitarist, is the subject of a documentary Apple just purchased.
Photo: Atlantic Records

Apple continues to add to its collection of movies and TV shows, with the latest acquisition a documentary about Ed Sheeran called Songwriter.

At this point, Apple is paying for a dozen TV shows to be produced, though the company hasn’t said what it’s going to do with them.

How Spike Jonze created that brilliant HomePod ad

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HomePod
Mini-documentary sheds light on one of Apple's best ads in years.
Photo: Apple

A new video reveals the creative process behind Spike Jonze’s brilliant short film “Welcome Home,” which paints the HomePod as a miracle device.

Not just one of the best Apple ads in ages, it’s one of the best adverts anywhere. The HomePod commercial stars English singer FKA twigs as a city dweller whose drab apartment is transformed into a colorful wonderland by an Apple smart speaker.

App: The Human Story is an antidote to Planet of the Apps

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app documentary
What does it take to make a successful app?
Photo: App: The Human Story

What does it feel like pinning your hopes and livelihood to one of Apple’s most important creations? Fascinating new documentary App: The Human Story takes an unflinching look at the world of app developers in an attempt to answer that question.

It showcases devs’ big wins — and infuriating struggles — as they try to survive and thrive in the massive app economy Apple created. It’s basically the show Apple should have made instead of its ridiculous and annoying Planet of the Apps.

Despite Apple hostility, director promises ‘impressionistic’ portrait of Steve Jobs

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What was it really like to work for Steve Jobs?
New documentary Steve Jobs: The Man in the Machine paints an "impressionistic" portrait of the late Apple chief. Photo: Jigsaw Productions
Photo: Jigsaw Productions

The director of a new documentary about Steve Jobs says his film won’t be a straightforward biography of the late Apple leader. Instead, Alex Gibney says he “set out to do an impressionistic film, structured in a way like Citizen Kane.

He also says his film, titled Steve Jobs: The Man in the Machine, will delve into Jobs’ character and whether he abandoned his counterculture values after turning Apple into a tech behemoth.

Beats Music teams with Spike Lee for Do the Right Thing documentary

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dotherightthing

Beats wowed soccer fans with its epic World Cup ad earlier this summer, but Apple’s new acquisition is now flexing its creative marketing muscles in an all-new way: documentaries.

To celebrate the 25th anniversary of Spike Lee’s legendary Do the Right Thing, Beats created a 22-minute short that follows the director and other actors from the film as they revisit the famous Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood in Brooklyn that was featured in the movie.

Along with chatting up residents about changes the iconic neighborhood has seen since the film was released, Beats Music also threw a block party to celebrate the 1989 film, with guest appearances by Dave Chappelle, Wesley Snipes, Mos Def and Erykah Badu, along with a performance of “Fight the Power” by Public Enemy.

Check out the full documentary below: