Movies

10 Movies That I Have Never Watched Despite Knowing Full Well That I Should Have Because People Keep Telling Me That My Life Is Incomplete for Not Having Done So

1. “Bull Durham”

I love Susan Sarandon. (And she eventually got a real-life husband out of it, Mr. Tim Robbins. Yay!) But I’m not a fan of Kevin Costner. For me, he just comes across as a smarmy jock with no charisma, no matter what role he is playing, and I had far too much of that mess during my formative years in Oklahoma. Ergo, a whole movie about him being a smarmy jock is just far too much for me to process.

But I did like him in “The Big Chill”. Mainly because almost all of his scenes were cut from the final print, resulting in him essentially playing a dead body. He nailed it.

2. “Field of Dreams”

Same as above. Rinse and repeat.

3. “Pulp Fiction”

To be fair, I did try to watch this one. Equally fair, I may or may not have partaken of a certain festive, plant-based recreational opportunity just prior to shoving the VHS into the player. This is not a movie that plays well with plant-based recreational opportunities that may or may not have been taken. And when I got to that scene with the big-ass needle? Yeah, I was done.

But, I am quite enamored of the soundtrack, which is stuffed with great songs. I’ve babbled about this track before on one of my posts, somewhere, but Maria McKee belting out “If Love Is a Red Dress Hang Me in Rags” is exquisite. When I envision myself as a torch singer in the 1940s, which happens more often than it should, I am often singing this song. In a red dress. (If you feel so moved, here’s a link.)

4. “The Godfather”

Yes, I know this is a supreme failure on my part, especially since I’m Italian and one would think I would at least be interested in my ancestral folklore, criminal or otherwise. I just never got around to perusing this one or, consequentially, the two sequels. (Although the word on the street is that I can be forgiven for skipping the third movie, if the critics are to be believed. Luckily, Sofia Coppola survived the pivotal miscasting by her daddy, Francis Ford, and she went on to direct some great movies of her own.) In my defense, I should offer that I did read Mario Puzo’s book but, as we all know, the book and the movie are often very different animals.

5. “The Lord of the Rings”

The shame is deep (multiplied by three, if you include the sequels) and I have nothing to offer as redemption. I’m not even going to pretend otherwise.

6. “Die Hard”

I actually liked Bruce Willis at one point. (His star dimmed a bit for me with certain things he did later in life, but that doesn’t really apply to this movie and its endless sequels.) I thought he was terrific on the “Moonlighting” TV series, although it’s fair to say my appreciation might have been more for the series itself, which was quite clever, and he got swept up in the mix. I’m just not a fan of movies where we have lots of noisy explosions, over-the-top violence, and thoroughly improbable situations that are resolved by a scriptwriter imagining things that simply don’t happen in the real world.

With that confession, I’m sure it’s clear why I don’t watch half the movies that come out these days. Sure, movie magic is often about the suspension of belief, and there are many fantastic movies who get us there. But in order to reach that suspension you have to be creative in the process and not force the situation. There are too many production executives who don’t understand that “just fill the thing with special effects” is a far cry from “let’s take the viewer on a special journey”.

I’m all about the special journeys. My life has been filled with them. I hope yours has been as well.

7. “Batman”

I seem to be stuck in a rut with movies that have begat sequels, none of which I’ve seen, so I’ll try to work away from that with the next few entries. In this case, I’m talking about Tim Burton’s version, released in 1989, starring Michael Keaton. I think Tim is swell, and he’s managed to make several mesmerizing movies that have been highly-popular despite his unique and quirky approach to things.

We need much more uniqueness and quirkiness in the world. A major aspect of the cultural divides many countries are seeing these days is based on a vengeful lack of appreciation for differentness. We should celebrate such, not denigrate. I fail to understand why some folks can’t grasp that. Unless they are just assholes, which is most likely the underlying basis of their sociopathy.

Still and all, this is another moment where I don’t have a valid excuse for not seeing a movie. I’m sure it won’t be the last.

8. “Braveheart”

Whoops. In trying to work myself away from movies with sequels I’ve managed to fall back into another rut, one wherein I started this little diatribe missive. I can’t stand Mel Gibson. I know he is loved by many, but he just irks me to no end. He is a misogynistic, racist homophobe. Granted, this was not immediately clear back when this movie was released and he was huge, but there were already warning signs, dutifully reported in the obscure but objective news sources that I have always followed. (When society is against you, you tend to seek out the reporting of those who are also facing the walls of oppression. Birds of a feather.)

I think it’s clear by now that I don’t support those who don’t support me. You can be a fabulous actor, writer, director, whatever. But once I learn that you hold views that contradict and, more importantly, affect my life path, I’m done. And my money stays in my wallet.

9. “Weird Science”

This one may not seem like an obvious entry, and it’s not, but I have to include it, as one of my closest besties is still stunned to this day that I have never seen it, and I am lessened in her eyes because of such. I just never felt the inclination. Perhaps someday I will peruse it, and I may achieve some sort of epiphany in doing so, but that day is not today.

10. “Dead Poets Society”

Another unobvious entry. Yet the non-viewing of this movie is perhaps at the top of my list of celluloid faux pas. It involves a prep school, something I yearned to attend during my formative years in Oklahoma, but financial matters made this an impossibility, never mind the fact that the Oklahoma address on my application would have inspired derision and laughter. It involves, from what I hear, a nearly-orgasmic scene in which the students are inspired to “seize the day”, a trite but valid adage which rules my life to this very moment. And it involves Robin Williams who, we now know, dealt with the personal demons many of us battle every day. (May you finally rest in peace, kind sir.)

This is a movie that I should have seen by now.

What movies have you not seen?

More importantly, are you making your movie choices for the right reasons?

Cheers.

 

26 replies »

  1. I’ve never actually SEEN The Exorcist. Even though I was in the same room when it was playing. I was 16 and terrified and sat strategically leaned back with my knee covering the tv for the whole film. So I’ve heard it! Just never seen it……

    Liked by 4 people

  2. I haven’t seen Pulp Fiction, Lord of the Rings (I fell asleep in the theatre, a transgression my 12-year-old son never forgave me for, but I was tired. Really tired.) or Batman. I don’t care for Kevin Costner and really find Mel Gibson to be an oaf. I’m surprised he hasn’t become one of Trump’s procurers, er officials. 😉

    Liked by 2 people

    • Wouldn’t be surprised if Gibson lives as a kiss-up troll under the WH and genuflects whenever the Stump and his pursed lips appears for obligatory compliments and White Nationalist get-togethers.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Citizen Kane. Almost any movie made in the 90s that didn’t involve animated rodents. And My Dinner With Andre. (Although I’ve tried on multiple occasions, it always sends me straight to 💤…)

    And my only theories about how Kevin Costner kept making movies is that he has some shitastic dirt on everyone in Hollywood or he has some amazing drugs. Maybe both.

    Like

  4. Still laughing at the Pulp Fiction blurb. Oh my God that movie bugged the hell out of me. My sons all think it’s one of the greatest movies of all time and I just don’t get it. I only have one actor that really bugs me and that’s Clooney. Never saw Lord of the Rings either. Probably should tho.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I can so relate to some of this…
    ugh, can’t stand Kevin Costner …never saw the Bodyguard either, which amazes some people…why…
    have always been indifferent to Mel Gibson, and I so agree about Moonlighting…I loved that show! I did see the first Die Hard, and enjoyed it, but was not interested in the sequels…I mean, really, it got ridiculous, didn’t it? 🤔
    I seem to remember loving the Keaton Batman movie, but that is so long ago…Dead Poet’s broke my heart and I couldn’t watch it again.
    Have not seen the Godfather, Braveheart or Weird Science.
    I went through a horror phase in my early 20s but now my beloved genre is definitely kids movies 🙂 The first time I saw Shrek…and the little bird exploded, I wanted to get up and applaud bahaha

    Liked by 1 person

  6. 1/ Bull dust premise, so not seen.
    2/ Foul premise, so not seen
    3/Tarantino, so yes seen. Vinny Barbarino was officially history after that one.
    4/Brando, so yes, seen
    5/LOTR, worthy but so so so long- once the trees started to walk and talk, I wanted to walk out as well. Seen, but through drooping eyelids.
    6/ Oh no. No, no, no, no. No.
    7/ See number one. Comic capes, capers, whatever- zero interest. And if you marvel at my immunity to these superhero crapfests- Sorry.
    8/ I have the freedom to not see it.
    9/ Weirdly, no.
    10/ Agree, I should have seen it but I didn’t. Iv’ been able to struggle on somehow though. Maybe one day I’ll seize the Blu-ray.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Have seen all but The GF. Just not into gangster/mafia stuff.
    Dislike Tarantino flicks except for Kill Bill 1.
    Loved Weird Science because I’ve always had a thing for geeky guys. And was fascinated with Downey, who stole every scene just by being in it. And loved Paxton even though he was a perfect hairball and hateful older brother.
    Parts of FOD were filmed in my hometown of Galena. My mom was ga-ga for B. Lancaster, who was reportedly rude to everyone but she wanted to see him anyway and stood outside the courthouse steps where they were filming. Having lived in LA for years, Mom was not impressed by movie sets, and Galena had been used before for 3 other films. She waited in the hot sun to see Lancaster with at nice man who stood talking to her through the wait, oddly wearing a leather jacket. Still no Burt Lancaster. Costner’s name was called on a bullhorn and the nice man keeping mom company said, “Excuse me, Mrs. Rigdon. They’re calling my name.” So I’m OK with him for being nice to my mom and Dances With Wolves.
    Thought Titanic stupid and intensely disliked it because of the way Molly Brown was portrayed, a great lady trashed. Tarantino does the same thing, and not happy with his recent treatment of Bruce Lee.

    Like

  8. I saw most of those (not Weird Science and part of Bull Durham, I got bored). Loved Field of Dreams (probably the only sports movie besides Slap Shot I ever got into, perhaps because it’s more of a fairy tale) and have visited the Dyersville IA site, having gone there to check out the basilica, but I’m digressing – my favorite part of the film was the then young Ray Liotta. Loved The Godfather (Parts I and II, not III). Liked Pulp Fiction when it came out, not so much now – though loved Travolta in Get Shorty and other movies, including the sequel and in his recent Gotti movie (which got awful reviews but I still liked it, so sue me). Dead Poet’s Society was not a fave (sanctimonious), Braveheart was boring (and I loathe Mel, too although then I just loathed the movie) Batman, “meh,” Lord of the Rings (love Tolkien, not the films).

    Like

  9. I’m one of those probably definitely annoying to others people who scroll through Netflix going “seen it, seen it, seen it, there’s nothing to watch!!!”, so I’ve watched a lot of bizarre films because there was nothing to watch, and ended up exploring new genres in film and TV series – like Kdrama which is very addictive and fascinating.

    I’ve seen all the films you’ve listed and their sequels if they had them. I haven’t seen most of the more recent Oscar nominated or winners, but may see them later.

    I’ll decide to watch a film usually because I’m curious about it or something connected with it, sometimes that can be – why is this so popular?

    Films are dreams. Someone else’s dream which you can watch, which may reveal yourself to you based on how you react to it. When a film becomes very popular, and gets rated as a “must-see” it shows a zeitgeist, past or present, what’s going on in the collective unconscious and consciousness of society… or was going on and that’s how we got where we are now.

    One of the most intriguing Italian films I’ve seen in recent years is – The Great Beauty (2013) – I didn’t think I’d like it… it was not what I expected. That’s my favourite type of film, the ones which surprise you.

    Thanks for sharing an interesting post and personal perspective, Brian 🙂

    Like

  10. I have seen all of these except Weird Science and Batman – not necessarily my choice. I did not watch all of Pulp Fiction – it really reviled me. I do not watch super-hero movies, despite the fact that I did watch the Linda Carter Wonder Woman TV series back in the day. What movies have I not seen? More than I have seen, especially as pertains to those released in the last few years. And I don’t often remember titles, so there’s that.

    Like

  11. Of these you list, i’ve only seen The Godfather. 🙂

    And i am in 100% in agreement with you about Kevin Costner. Ick. He’s too greasy. (i know, but that’s the only word i can come up with that fits for me.)

    Ditto Mel Gibson. Except i actually loathe him for all the reason you state here. With Kevin Costner it’s merely dislike for slime, with Mel it’s cringe inducing, toxic, norovirus-like disgust.

    I’ve never seen a single Star Wars movie. I know, right?!

    Like

  12. Uh, to each their own. In that list you so thoughtfully shared, there are several that, although they are touted as ‘must sees’, are not to be seen (by me). I just could not generate interest.

    But Bull Durham? Despite Costner (whom I’m ambivalent about…never have seen “Dances With Wolves” and fell asleep in “Water World”) that film is actually great. You just have to repress the gag reflex until you get to the end, which rocks. IMHO. And one of the great lines (to me) of all time “You don’t hit a drunk! Especially not in the eye!” (paraphrased) always makes me chuckle.

    I’ve never seen “Field of Dreams”, well not all the way through. I always fall asleep. Something about the acting perhaps..

    4. “The Godfather”

    Yes, I know this is a supreme failure on my part, especially since I’m Italian and one would think I would at least be interested in my ancestral folklore, criminal or otherwise. I just never got around to perusing this one or, consequentially, the two sequels. (Although the word on the street is that I can be forgiven for skipping the third movie, if the critics are to be believed. Luckily, Sofia Coppola survived the pivotal miscasting by her daddy, Francis Ford, and she went on to direct some great movies of her own.) In my defense, I should offer that I did read Mario Puzo’s book but, as we all know, the book and the movie are often very different animals.

    5. “The Lord of the Rings”

    The shame is deep (multiplied by three, if you include the sequels) and I have nothing to offer as redemption. I’m not even going to pretend otherwise.

    6. “Die Hard”

    I actually liked Bruce Willis at one point. (His star dimmed a bit for me with certain things he did later in life, but that doesn’t really apply to this movie and its endless sequels.) I thought he was terrific on the “Moonlighting” TV series, although it’s fair to say my appreciation might have been more for the series itself, which was quite clever, and he got swept up in the mix. I’m just not a fan of movies where we have lots of noisy explosions, over-the-top violence, and thoroughly improbable situations that are resolved by a scriptwriter imagining things that simply don’t happen in the real world.

    With that confession, I’m sure it’s clear why I don’t watch half the movies that come out these days. Sure, movie magic is often about the suspension of belief, and there are many fantastic movies who get us there. But in order to reach that suspension you have to be creative in the process and not force the situation. There are too many production executives who don’t understand that “just fill the thing with special effects” is a far cry from “let’s take the viewer on a special journey”.

    I’m all about the special journeys. My life has been filled with them. I hope yours has been as well.

    7. “Batman”

    I seem to be stuck in a rut with movies that have begat sequels, none of which I’ve seen, so I’ll try to work away from that with the next few entries. In this case, I’m talking about Tim Burton’s version, released in 1989, starring Michael Keaton. I think Tim is swell, and he’s managed to make several mesmerizing movies that have been highly-popular despite his unique and quirky approach to things.

    We need much more uniqueness and quirkiness in the world. A major aspect of the cultural divides many countries are seeing these days is based on a vengeful lack of appreciation for differentness. We should celebrate such, not denigrate. I fail to understand why some folks can’t grasp that. Unless they are just assholes, which is most likely the underlying basis of their sociopathy.

    Still and all, this is another moment where I don’t have a valid excuse for not seeing a movie. I’m sure it won’t be the last.

    8. “Braveheart”

    Whoops. In trying to work myself away from movies with sequels I’ve managed to fall back into another rut, one wherein I started this little diatribe missive. I can’t stand Mel Gibson. I know he is loved by many, but he just irks me to no end. He is a misogynistic, racist homophobe. Granted, this was not immediately clear back when this movie was released and he was huge, but there were already warning signs, dutifully reported in the obscure but objective news sources that I have always followed. (When society is against you, you tend to seek out the reporting of those who are also facing the walls of oppression. Birds of a feather.)

    I think it’s clear by now that I don’t support those who don’t support me. You can be a fabulous actor, writer, director, whatever. But once I learn that you hold views that contradict and, more importantly, affect my life path, I’m done. And my money stays in my wallet.

    9. “Weird Science”

    This one may not seem like an obvious entry, and it’s not, but I have to include it, as one of my closest besties is still stunned to this day that I have never seen it, and I am lessened in her eyes because of such. I just never felt the inclination. Perhaps someday I will peruse it, and I may achieve some sort of epiphany in doing so, but that day is not today.

    10. “Dead Poets Society”

    Another unobvious entry. Yet the non-viewing of this movie is perhaps at the top of my list of celluloid faux pas. It involves a prep school, something I yearned to attend during my formative years in Oklahoma, but financial matters made this an impossibility, never mind the fact that the Oklahoma address on my application would have inspired derision and laughter. It involves, from what I hear, a nearly-orgasmic scene in which the students are inspired to “seize the day”, a trite but valid adage which rules my life to this very moment. And it involves Robin Williams who, we now know, dealt with the personal demons many of us battle every day. (May you finally rest in peace, kind sir.)

    Like

  13. Uh, to each their own. In that list you so thoughtfully shared, there are several that, although they are touted as ‘must sees’, are not to be seen (by me). I just could not generate interest.

    But Bull Durham? Despite Costner (whom I’m ambivalent about…never have seen “Dances With Wolves” and fell asleep in “Water World”) that film is actually great. You just have to repress the gag reflex until you get to the end, which rocks. IMHO. And one of the great lines (to me) of all time “You don’t hit a drunk! Especially not in the eye!” (paraphrased) always makes me chuckle.

    “Pulp Fiction” Get past the needle. Stick your fingers in your ears and go LALALALLALA or something, but you really need to finish it. The ending is so exquisite, you’ll kick yourself for not watching it sooner. Although the rather blatant S & M scene (which oddly was mentioned by another blogger today. Uh… 😐 ) and some perhaps gay bashing occurs. It’s Taratino. He has no manners. He treats women characters just as badly IMHO…stereotype anyone?

    “Weird Science” – Anthony Michael Hall before he went psycho. He was still the scrawny nerdy kid and the film is a sort of rite of passage film I think for heterosexual teenage and pre-teen boys. Tits and ass and science fiction. In their wheelhouse.

    I’ve never seen “Field of Dreams”, well not all the way through. I always fall asleep. Something about the acting perhaps..

    Nor “The Godfather”. It’s a dude film. And it’s boring (to me). Yeah, every male who reads this (save you possibly) is now yelling because I don’t care for this type of ‘dude film.” *YAWN*

    Nor “Braveheart” I think this one came out after Gibson fell off his pedestal and revealed his drunken and ugly face to the world, but if not? It’s a historical film. DOUBLE **YAWN***

    “Dead Poets Society” Ugggh. I have a problem with Robin Williams still, and wasn’t Matt Damon in this one? The combination made me gag a little. Although I did watch “The Legend of Bagger Vance” at long last and quite enjoyed it. Sports movies (save baseball ones…some of them anyway and one or two football movies (the Longest Yard (both versions), Replacements come to mind) sports movies make me twitch. Not good.

    And just in case my critique of the “The Godfather” might be seen as sexist, I don’t like most ‘chick flicks’ either.

    No, give me a good plot and good acting, and a film editor who doesn’t hack the fine work to bits, and I’ll watch it. Well probably.

    Like

  14. I like fantasy but I fell asleep twice trying to watch Lord of the Rings ^^” My mum was obsessed with Braveheart when it was released, but I’ve only seen bits and pieces and that was enough. I prefer TV shows so I watched Gotham instead of the Batman films. The only one on your list I’ve seen all the way through is Die Hard. My sister loved that trilogy.

    Apparently ‘The Breakfast Club’ and ‘The Princess Bride’ are amazing ‘must see’ classics: I watched the first 5 minutes of both and turned them off… Similar with The Avengers. People go nuts for those films, but even though I love superheroes I found them really boring!

    Liked by 1 person

    • “Breakfast Club”, for one, is very time-specific. It came out while I was in college, and there are a ton of references to current goings-on, so I can see how that one would not appeal to folks who came along a bit later. I did enjoy “Princess Bride”, but I am far more enamored of the book which, even though it’s a bit of a cliche, is usually the case with most movies I see…

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Ok. (Scrapes back chair and nervously stands to face the group), ‘My name is Lockwood and I, not like, but LOVE Kevin Costner’, (reaches back to grab coat from chair and flees the room). I’ve not seen all his films and I’m not necessarily commenting on his acting ability, though I do think he’s good, but he just has something about him I really like. ‘The Postman’ being one of my favourites of his, (long post-apocalyptic film). Another confession, which surprises many; I have never seen any of the Harry Potter films, nor have I read the books. A film I did see which I wish I hadn’t; Titanic. Good grief, what a long boring mess that was. Much prefer the very short excellent comedy parody that was doing the rounds. Never been a fan of Leonardo Di Caprio, didn’t ‘get’ him at all. I think because he always looks too young for his part. However, I’ve just been to see ‘Once Upon a Time In America’ and loved him in it. Stonkingly good. I’ve seen possibly half on your list, no strong urge to see the ones I’ve missed! Even if I don’t enjoy a film, I try to remember that it’s someone’s art and passion, maybe a lifetime’s work, and I try to at least appreciate and applaud that.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well, I wondered how long it would take before this little post triggered a backlash. (Just kidding.) Several members of my family think Kevin is just the bee’s knees, so I’m used to some folks not being very fond of my assessment. We all have our various interests, yes?

      I went for the longest time without seeing “Titanic”, mainly because of all the hype. You couldn’t get away from the publicity machine and I was just annoyed by the whole mess. When I finally gave in and watched it, years later, I found it basically the same as you did. (This thing won 500 Academy Awards? Why?)

      I do agree that Leonardo often looks too young for his roles. (And he probably will continue to do so until he’s 75, damn his genes.) But I do like him. Might I suggest that you take a gander at “Shutter Island”? It’s a very twisty and intriguing movie…

      And yes, I realize that I’m being a bit dismissive of the passion and art of others, so I do get a demerit for that, but I also think it’s fair that some movies and actors that are “highly-acclaimed” are really not that great at all. (Did someone mention “Titanic”?)

      Like

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