Pros: A story about your favorite films from the mouths of people directly involved in their creation; rare archival footage; interesting facts about the filmmaking process Cons: Lack of interviews with A-list stars; slightly controversial choice of films for the first season of The Movies That Made Us / “Movies We Grew Up With”
Genre documentary series
Creator Brian Volk-Weiss
Year of release 2019
Unlike the series The Toys That Made Us, which also talks about toys that are not particularly well-known in our country, say, about the same He-Man, GI Joe or Professional Wrestling series, cinema is a more international product, especially since just the end of the 80s – the beginning of the 90s. The last century was marked by the appearance of video salons in Ukraine and the first acquaintance of former USSR citizens with Western films. And, naturally, Dirty Dancing, Home Alone, Ghostbusters and Die Hard were among these films. Later, already in the 90s and 2000s, these films were repeatedly broadcast on television, so that most viewers know them practically by heart.
As mentioned above, The Movies That Made Us follows the same pattern as The Toys That Made Us, and consists of interviews with actors, producers, screenwriters, stuntmen, and composers who took part in the creation of the films included in the first season. Unfortunately, the show’s writers couldn’t get any A-list stars to talk about the films, so Macaulay Culkin doesn’t talk about the negative impact Home Alone had on his life here; Jennifer Gray, for whom Dirty Dancing remained the only film of any note in her career, does not appear in the frame; and in the Die Hard episode there is no interview with Bruce Willis. On the other hand, this may be for the better; the stars would overshadow the rest of the participants in the filming process, and their view of the events of those years is no less, and in some places, perhaps more interesting, than the view of the stars who have already repeatedly talked about their work in these films.
Choosing Dirty Dancing, Home Alone, Ghostbusters and Die Hard for the first season of The Movies That Made Us is the easiest way to reach the mass audience who still loves these films. Although so much has already been said and written about these films that it seems difficult for Brian Volk-Weiss and his team to add anything new here. However, despite the somewhat hackneyed subject matter, the authors managed to successfully present the available facts and tell about some little-known stories from the set.
In the first season of The Movies That Made Us, you’ll find out why Patrick Swayze’s resume included a ban on dancing; what kind of music were all the dance numbers in Dirty Dancing actually filmed to? what the stuntmen experienced on the set of Home Alone and how the flood scene was filmed; what Ghostbusters might have been called if not for a fluke, and how the special effects for this film were created; why the studio was forced to remove Bruce Willis’s face from the Die Hard posters and why there was real fear on Alan Rickman’s face in the scene of falling from a skyscraper.
If you love cinema, you are partial to classic films of the 80s. last century – this series is for you. And as Brian Volk-Weiss said, unlike The Toys That Made Us, shows about movies can be made almost endlessly, fortunately, a lot of cult films have been made over the past 125 years and there is something to be said about each of them.
PS As for the series The Toys That Made Us, the third season of the show was released in November, in which the authors talked about such toys as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Power Rangers, My Little Pony and Professional Wrestling.
A real gift for seasoned film buffs and members of the younger generation obsessed with everything related to the 80s. last century