The M-Net Movies Bucket List pop-up channel (109) is well under way as the channel counts down 100 popular and iconic Hollywood movies to see before you die. Along with the M-Net Movies Bucket List countdown are an added extra treat- The M-Net Movies Bucket List Bonus Features comprise additional classics which can’t be ignored but which will appeal to niche audiences. Among these titles are vintage silver screen darlings that were ground-breaking at their time.
Get to learn more about some of these iconic films along with fascinating trivia of all your favourite films.
Wednesday, 22 November 2017
The Princess Bride at 18:30
An enchanting, swashbuckling fairy tale that made the age-old damsel-in-distress story fresh. A beautiful princess must be saved from her engagement to a villainous Prince.
This was Willoughby Gray’s final film before his death on February 13, 1993 at the age of 76.
Robin Wright and Cary Elwes were smitten with each other during filming, naturally helping their chemistry in the movie. Elwes said that he “couldn’t concentrate on much of anything after that first encounter with Robin.”
Director Rob Reiner left the set during Billy Crystal’s scenes because he would laugh so hard that he would feel nauseated.
The Deer Hunter at 20:00
Robert De Niro and Christopher Walken’s performances earned this film 5 Oscars. See how the experiences of the Vietnam War impacts the lives of a small town in Pennsylvania.
Christopher Walken achieved the withdrawn, hollow look of his character by consuming nothing but water, rice, and bananas.
Robert De Niro and John Savage performed their own stunts for the fall into the river, filming the thirty foot drop fifteen times in two days.
Robert De Niro, who prepared for his role by socializing with steelworkers, was introduced by his hosts and new friends as Bob, and no one recognized him.
The deaths of approximately twenty-eight people, who died playing Russian Roulette, were reported as having been influenced by scenes in the movie.
Platoon at 23:05
Informed by his personal experience Oliver Stone writes and directs a gritty, compelling war epic. A young solider faces a moral crisis when confronted with the Vietnam War’s horror.
Based on Oliver Stone’s personal experience during the Vietnam War, and based on a screenplay he finished around 1971. Numerous studios passed on it, until he finally got approval, and starting filming in early 1986.
The movie is narrated by Charlie Sheen, eerily echoing his father Martin Sheen’s narration of Apocalypse Now (1979), also filmed extensively in the Philippines.
Tom Berenger’s life-like scar required three hours of make-up work every day of shooting.
Oliver Stone considered casting Johnny Depp for the lead role of Private Chris Taylor, but Depp was too young for the part, and unknown at the time. Stone said that Depp would someday become a huge star, and is thus one of the first filmmakers who introduced Johnny Depp to Hollywood.
Thursday, 23 November 2017
The Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship Of The Ring 13v at 16:28
Peter Jackson brings J.R.R. Tolkien’s fantasy masterpiece to life with this Oscar-winning film about a hobbit on a dangerous quest to destroy the One Ring and the dark lord Sauron.
Viggo Mortensen (Aragorn), who is trilingual in English, Spanish, and Danish, requested the script be revised, to let Aragorn speak more of his lines in Elvish.
Sir Christopher Lee (Saruman) read “The Lord of the Rings” once a year, until his death in 2015, and had done so since the year it was published, and is the only member of the cast and crew ever to have met J.R.R. Tolkien.
Orlando Bloom landed the role of Legolas two days before he finished drama school.
Liv Tyler accidentally stabbed herself up in the right thigh, when filming the “If you want him, come and claim him!” sequence. The footage was featured in bloopers and outtakes of the film.
The Notebook 13s at 19:25
Rachel McAdams and Ryan Gosling star in this romantic tearjerker. After being separated, a couple who are passionately in love get a second chance at happiness.
Rachel McAdams spent time in Charleston before filming to familiarize herself with the surroundings. She also took ballet and etiquette classes and had a dialect coach to learn the southern accent.
According to Nick Cassavetes, Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams did not get along at first and Gosling tried to have McAdams replaced.
Ryan Gosling built the kitchen table featured in the movie, in preparation for his role as Noah.
A whole scene telling the backstory about the notebook itself was cut out.
Goodfellas 18vsl at 21:30
Oscar winner Martin Scorsese directs this explosive, industry-defining film. Robert De Niro and Ray Liotta take you into the dangerous world of the Italian mafia in America.
According to Ray Liotta, Martin Scorsese was so involved in every detail of the cast’s wardrobe, that he tied Liotta’s tie himself to make sure it was accurate for the film’s setting.
Ray Liotta’s mother died of cancer during filming. Liotta says that he used his anger over losing his mother for certain scenes, the pistol-whipping scene in particular.
Every one of Robert De Niro’s outfits had a watch and a pinkie ring to go with it.
Ray Liotta turned down the part of Harvey Dent in Batman (1989) in order to make this movie.
After Joe Pesci’s mother saw the film, she told her son that the movie was good, then asked him if he had to curse so much.
Friday, 24 November 2017
BONUS: Kramer Vs Kramer Pg at 15:04
Dustin Hoffman and Meryl Streep give Oscar worthy performances in this “Best Picture” winner. The ugly side of divorce is explored when a couple fight for custody of their son.
The strength of the performances of the two lead actors can be at least partly attributed to what was going on in their private lives at the time. Dustin Hoffman was in the midst of a messy divorce, while Meryl Streep was still recovering from the death of her lover, John Cazale.
Dustin Hoffman and Meryl Streep would often, jokingly, try to get Justin Henry to pick one of them over the other. One day on the set, Hoffman asked Henry who he’d rather be with. Henry said, “Her. She’s nicer,” to which Hoffman replied, “Oh yeah? Work with her five weeks then see what you say.”
Meryl Streep wrote her own courtroom speech upon writer-director Robert Benton’s suggestion, after she told him she wasn’t satisfied with the way it was originally written.
Rocky Pg13vl at 16:50
Grit, heart and an outstanding Sylvester Stallone performance run this iconic film that inspired a generation. A small-time boxer gets the chance to fight the heavyweight champ.
The highest-grossing movie of 1976.
Sylvester Stallone was inspired to write the screenplay for the film, after seeing the Chuck Wepner-Muhammad Ali fight on March 24, 1975, at the Richfield Coliseum outside of Cleveland in Richfield, Ohio.
When he agreed to make the film, John G. Avildsen had never watched a professional boxing match, nor had he ever seen a boxing movie.
Sylvester Stallone insisted that the scene where he admits his fears and doubts to Adrian the night before the fight be filmed, even though production was running far behind and the producers wanted to skip it. Stallone had only one take for the scene, despite the fact that he considered it to be the most important scene in the film.
During his audition, Carl Weathers was sparring with Sylvester Stallone and accidentally punched him on the chin. Stallone told Weathers to calm down, as it was only an audition, and Weathers said that if he was allowed to audition with a ‘real’ actor, not a stand-in, he would be able to do a lot better. Director John G. Avildsen smiled and told Weathers that Stallone was the real actor (and the writer). Weathers looked at Stallone thoughtfully for a moment, and said, “Well, maybe he’ll get better.” Stallone immediately offered him the role.
Raiders Of The Lost Ark Pg13vl at 18:50
The iconic Steven Spielberg defined the adventure genre as Harrison Ford became Indiana Jones, the legendary adventurer hired to find the Ark of the Covenant before the Nazis.
While filming the snakes scenes inside the Well of the Souls, First Assistant Director David Tomblin, at one point, had a python bite his hand and latch on without letting go. Tomblin then calmly asked someone to grab the python (still attached to Tomblin’s hand) by the tail and whip it, so that the snap would send a wave up the snake’s body and force it to let go. A stage hand did just that, and the python released its bite from Tomblin’s hand. Tomblin then got medical attention on his hand, and the python itself was not injured.
During filming in Tunisia, nearly everyone in the cast and crew got sick, except Director Steven Spielberg. It is thought that he avoided illness by eating only the food he’d brought with him: a lot of cans of Spaghetti-O’s.
The famous scene in which Indy shoots a marauding and flamboyant swordsman was not in the original script. Harrison Ford was supposed to use his whip to get the sword out of his attacker’s hands, but the food poisoning he and the rest of the crew had gotten, made him too sick to perform the stunt. After several unsuccessful tries, Ford suggested “shooting the sucker”. Steven Spielberg immediately took him up the idea, and the scene was successfully filmed.
The out-of-control airplane actually ran over Harrison Ford’s knee, tearing his ligaments. Rather than submit to Tunisian health care, Ford had his knee wrapped in ice and carried on.
Se7en 18vl at 20:44
Legendary director David Fincher (Fight Club) leads Oscar winners Morgan Freeman and Brad Pitt in this chilling thriller about two detectives chasing a ritualistic serial killer.
Denzel Washington turned down the part that went to Brad Pitt, telling Entertainment Weekly that the film was too “dark and evil.” Washington later regretted his decision upon seeing a screening.
Gwyneth Paltrow was David Fincher’s first choice for the part of Brad Pitt’s wife, having impressed him with her work in Flesh and Bone (1993). Paltrow was initially not interested, so Fincher had to ask her then boyfriend – Brad Pitt – to get her to come in and meet with him.
Brad Pitt bought his own ties for the movie. He wanted Mills to have poor fashion sense.
Originally, Morgan Freeman drew his pistol with his finger on the trigger. Police officers that were on the set as technical advisors quickly corrected him, as that is not correct police procedure.
David Fincher wanted the credits to look like a killer had written them.
Sylvester Stallone turned down the role of Mills. He told Ain’t It Cool News that this was a mistake.
Aliens 16vl at 22:49
Oscar winner James Cameron takes the helm as Sigourney Weaver returns to this dark universe. Years later the sole survivor accompanied by marines travels back to the ominous moon.
Sigourney Weaver had several notes for James Cameron after having read the script. However, Cameron praised her for never taking issue with the direction he wanted to take with the story. Her notes were all about how she felt Ripley should respond to her situations, which he was happy to accommodate.
Sigourney Weaver’s Best Actress Academy Award nomination for this movie was the first ever for an actress in a role in an action movie.
In a deleted scene, the portrait of Ripley’s daughter is of Elizabeth Inglis, Sigourney Weaver’s real-life mother.
Having hired James Cameron to write the screenplay, 20th Century Fox then did the unthinkable when he left the production to direct The Terminator (1984): they agreed to wait for Cameron to become available again and finish the screenplay. Cameron had only completed about 90 pages at that stage, but the studio had loved what he had written so far.
BONUS: Easy Rider 16vsn at 01:05
Harley-Davidson Hydra-Glides, Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper and Jack Nicholson are born to be wild in this road trip film. Two bikers explore the USA’s social landscape on their travels.
Dennis Hopper and Peter Fonda did not write a full script for the movie, and made most of it up as they went along. They didn’t hire a crew, but instead picked up hippies at communes across the country, and used friends and passers-by to hold the cameras, and were drunk and stoned most of the time.
Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper, and Jack Nicholson were actually smoking marijuana on camera. LSD, however, was not actually used during the acid scene, as Fonda has stated.
Peter Fonda got the idea for this movie after seeing a picture of he and Bruce Dern on their motorcycles. He got Dennis Hopper (who was planning to get out of the acting business and become a teacher at the time) involved when he promised him he could direct the film.
Saturday, 25 November 2017
BONUS: Breakfast At Tiffany’s Pg13 at 14:00
Audrey Hepburn’s stylish performance is captivating in this iconic romcom. A struggling writer falls for his neighbour, a New York socialite, as they search for love in the big city.
Audrey Hepburn’s salary for the film was $750,000, making her the highest paid actress per film at the time.
Tiffany’s opened its doors on a Sunday for the first time since the 19th century so that filming could take place inside the store.
Patricia Neal’s hair was dyed red so as not to compete with Audrey Hepburn’s dark locks.
Alien 13vl at 15:55
Ridley Scott’s sci-fi horror masterpiece sees Sigourney Weaver’s crew answer a distress call. It is only the beginning of a terrifying nightmare. In space no one can hear you scream.
Shredded condoms were used to create tendons of the beast’s ferocious jaws.
According to Yaphet Kotto, Ridley Scott told him to annoy Sigourney Weaver off-camera, so that there would be tension between their characters. Kotto regrets this, because he really liked Weaver.
The chestbursting scene was filmed in one take with four cameras.
The dead facehugger that Ash autopsies was made using fresh shellfish, four oysters, and a sheep kidney to recreate the internal organs.
Harrison Ford turned down the role of Captain Dallas.
Jurassic Park Pg13vl at 17:55
Oscar winning director Steven Spielberg brings Michael Crichton’s novel to life in this ground-breaking film about a dinosaur theme park that turns into a death trap.
Michael Crichton was encouraged to write the novel after he took the idea about dinosaur cloning to some scientists who saw the plausibility in it. Crichton told Steven Spielberg the idea and he loved it, so Spielberg coaxed the rest of the story out of him. Spielberg then storyboarded the book (something he had never done before), with scenes he wanted to carry over to the film.
The film and the book generated so much interest in dinosaurs, that the study of paleontology has had a record increase in students.
The Tyrannosaurus’ roars were a combination of dog, penguin, tiger, alligator, and elephant sounds.
Steven Spielberg wanted the velociraptors to be about ten feet tall, which was taller than they were known to be. During filming, paleontologists uncovered ten-foot-tall specimens of raptors called Utahraptors.
Harrison Ford was offered and turned down the role of Dr. Alan Grant, as he felt that the part just wasn’t right for him. After seeing the film, he says that he had made the right decision.
The Shining 16vnl at 20:01
Based on a Stephen King novel. Jack Nicholson’s performance and Stanley Kubrick’s vision make this a masterpiece. A family staying at a remote hotel are targeted by an evil entity.
To get Jack Nicholson in the right agitated mood, he was only fed cheese sandwiches for two weeks, which he hates.
According to Shelley Duvall, the infamous “Here’s Johnny!” scene took three days to film and the use of sixty doors.
Shelley Duvall suffered from nervous exhaustion throughout filming, including physical illness and hair loss.
Stanley Kubrick, known for his compulsiveness and numerous retakes, got the difficult shot of blood pouring from the elevators in only three takes. This would be remarkable if it weren’t for the fact that the shot took nine days to set up. Every time the doors opened and the blood poured out, Kubrick would say, “It doesn’t look like blood.” In the end, the shot took approximately a year to get right.
Stephen King was quite disappointed in the final film. While admitting that Stanley Kubrick’s visuals were stunning, he said that was surface and not substance. He often described the film as “A fancy car without an engine.”
Bad Boys 16vl at 22:01
Michael Bay’s big action mixed with Will Smith and Martin Lawrence’s chemistry makes for an epic buddy cop adventure. Two detectives fight to keep a witness to a murder alive.
The two leads were originally intended for Eddie Murphy and Wesley Snipes.
Director Michael Bay didn’t like the script and often engaged Will Smith and Martin Lawrence in discussions about how the dialogue and scenes could improve. He often allowed them to improvise while the camera were rolling.
The Porsche 911, used in the opening scene of the film, was lent to the production by Michael Bay, who was already a successful director of television commercials and music videos.
Bad Boys was Michael Bay’s Directorial debut for a major film.
Michael Bay has gone on record about his dissatisfaction with the ultimate cut of he film. He expressed dissatisfaction with several specific shots, including the car chase following the Club Hell sequence, and one shot in which a character is thrust from an exploding airplane.
BONUS: Dr. Strangelove Or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The Bomb Pg at 00:05
Stanley Kubrick and Peter Sellers give a funny, razor-sharp and yet disturbing commentary on the Cold War in this riveting classic.
Stanley Kubrick intended to film in the United States. Filming was moved to England’s Shepperton Studio because Peter Sellers had to stay in England due to his pending divorce.
Peter Sellers was paid $1 million, 55% of the film’s budget. Stanley Kubrick famously quipped “I got three for the price of six”.
As research, Stanley Kubrick read nearly 50 books about nuclear war.
Stanley Kubrick wanted the tablecloth on the War Room table to be green, so the actors would feel like they were playing a game of poker over the world’s fate.