10 Movie Scenes Shot For Real

It all happened.

Cliffhanger Sylvester Stallone
TriStar Pictures

Cinema is the dream factory where the impossible is made possible, where talented filmmakers can make audiences believe even the most seemingly ridiculous and intangible of feats.

Yet not all movies are created equal, and often the magic trick will simply draw too much attention to itself through obvious or sub-par CGI.

And then there are movie moments so stunning that we as viewers simply assume they were achieved through classic Hollywood trickery.

But there are those rare cases where scenes which seem improbable if not impossible to execute were actually pulled off legitimately.

These 10 movies all shot scenes entirely in-camera despite the obvious expectation from audiences that they were blatantly faked with visual effects.

As a testament to what can be achieved when filmmakers dig deep and refuse to settle for just "fixing it in post," these scenes throw the gauntlet down to Hollywood, to try harder and settle less for digital assistance.

Then again, in a couple of cases it's clear that the practical option is just way, way too dangerous for any filmmaker who values their job - or the lives of their cast and crew, for that matter - to actually attempt nowadays...

10. Ripley Blindly Sinks A Basketball - Alien Resurrection

Cliffhanger Sylvester Stallone

Alien Resurrection may be one of the worst movies in the franchise, but it also lays claim to one of the most low-key badass moments in the series.

In order to display the Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) clone's physical prowess, we memorably see her throw a basketball over her head and sink it in the hoop behind her without even looking.

Given that the ball disappears out of the frame before sinking through the basket, most audiences would understandably assume that the winning ball was either CGI or simply dropped through the net by an off-screen stage hand.

But incredibly, Weaver actually sunk the shot herself, having trained for 10 days and landing one out of every six baskets on average during practise, albeit at a much closer distance than would be possible on the actual set.

During shooting, time was scheduled to allow Weaver to try and sink the shot, and after spending all day failing, she was given one final chance to pull it off.

Incredibly, that was her single successful basket, causing co-star Ron Perlman to accidentally break character out of sheer surprise, shouting, "Oh my god!". As a result, the editors had to abruptly cut away after the ball sinks through the net.


Stay at home dad who spends as much time teaching his kids the merits of Martin Scorsese as possible (against the missus' wishes). General video game, TV and film nut. Occasional sports fan. Full time loon.