It’s Monday. Time for the Reader Request [Use comments to request topics for next week] Today’s topic was suggested by Glenn. It’s a humiliating one --thanks. He wants me to 'fess up to the bonafide classics I’ve never seen. At the risk of losing all of your respect here are the five films I’m most embarrassed to admit that I’ve never seen.
The Deer Hunter(1978) & Platoon(1986)
I’ll start with what I like to call my ‘Oscar Goes to Vietnam Double Feature’. Hollywood has visited 'Nam quite often but I usually feign sickness (or maybe I am washing my hair?) when those films open and I have to decline. I don’t count war films among my favorite genres. The serious meditations within the genre depress me. The rah-rah action films in this milieu sicken me. Don’t get me started on Forrest Gump’s “Disneyworld version of Vietnam” (thanks, Nick). And there’s also this: Apocalypse Now (my article) and Coming Home (my review) will be tough to beat as Vietnam war coverage. At least for me.
status: Planning to watch both soon.
I was living abroad when this film opened. Tis my only excuse for having missed it. Am assuming everyone is correct to think it should’ve beat Dances with Wolves for the Oscar. My favorite 1990 film is Tim Burton’s Edward Scissorhands.
status: Will make a valiant effort to watch soon.
Of the five movies listed herein, this is the one I’m most excited to see. I have been loving Barbara Stanwyck ever since I held the “who’s your favorite actress?” polls at the site. When she made an impressive showing in the finals, I decided that I really must investigate her caree. With one famed exception (Stella Dallas I haven’t been the least bit disappointed. I also am a known fan of the neo-noir remake of sorts, Body Heat (my article). There’s every reason to believe I’ll love this movie.
status: Soon on the Netflix queue.
A Clockwork Orange (1971)
Why do I willfully ignore a film which is, by so many accounts, one of the greatest ever? Two reasons. The first is Stanley Kubrick. He is, apart from Spielberg the most widely beloved auteur to whom I have never fullly warmed. I don’t dislike his films. But neither do I ever seem to fully embrace or buy into their genius. I keep trying though. If he is God’s chosen auteur I suppose I’m in for 72 cold takes of the scene where I request entrance at the Pearly Gates.
The second reason is more sentimental and more truthful as to why I’ve never watched this dystopian flick: Singin’ in the Rain. That film’s titular scene starring a smiling and radiant Gene Kelly is one of my five favorite film moments ever. For those who understand how few the number five is when drawn from 1000s of hours of the great obsession of my life you’ll understand that Singin’ is sacred to me. I’m aware that Clockwork uses the song in a particularly ghastly context. Even this second hand knowledge sometimes invades my thoughts when I’m just trying to enjoy Gene Kelly sloshing about in the studio-generated rain. No thanks.
status: Only if you hold my eyes open with Clockwork Orangestyle metal pincers.
Your Turn: What are you embarrassed to admit you haven't seen? 'Fess up in the comments [And leave a request if you have one]
previous requests: Favorite Animals (for Cal) Cher (for David) and The Sound of Music (for Anonymous)
tags: classics, entertainment,cinema, Oscars, movies