I’ve watched Henry Hathaway‘s North to Alaska at least 10 or 12 times, but I’ve never seen Irving Thalberg‘s Grand Hotel. I’ve never seen D.W. Griffith‘s A Birth of a Nation, and I don’t think I want to either. (See, p.c. banshees? I can dismiss a film for being having grotesque racial attitudes as well as you can.) I’ve never seen Andrezj Wajda‘s Kanal, but I’d like to. I’ve never sat down with George Cukor‘s The Women or Sylvia Scarlett.
I tried watching None But The Lonely Heart but I couldn’t get through it, so you might as well say I’ve never seen it. All my life I’ve avoided almost every film starring Claudette Colbert, the exception being It Happened One Night, Cleopatra and Since You Went Away. I’ve caught just about every film Robert Duvall was ever in, but I’ve strangely never seen The Apostle. I’ve never seen Ernst Lubitsch‘s Bluebeard’s Eighth Wife. Nor have I ever seen Francois Truffaut‘s The Wild Child. I wouldn’t watch Parnell, the 1937 Clark Gable film, with a knife at my back.
Rather than ask for films that readers haven’t seen, how about switching the topic to strange attractions — i.e., films you know are shallow or not very accomplished or certainly marginal, but which you’ve seen numerous times over the years because there’s something fundamentally likable or comforting about them? One of my guilty pleasures would be North to Alaska — what’s yours?