So … Star Wars. I … um. I haven’t seen it. I don’t mean the new one. I mean any of them. Not one. Not the one with Jar Jar; not the ones from the ‘70s and ‘80s. Not a single one.
But I just … never saw them. I’m sure they’re great, but I just never saw the appeal.
It’s not just Star Wars either.
There are many, many classic movies (depending on your definition of “classic”) that I haven’t seen. I think I’ve seen maybe 15 percent of the 100 Greatest Movies as defined by the American Film Institute. Maybe.
Various people are appalled by different ones, but I think the five most shocking omissions in my film-viewing history are:
- E.T. – I don’t know why I never saw E.T. I mean, I am pop culture-savvy enough to get the references (“Phone home” and such), but I have never seen the whole movie from start to finish, even though I was a child in the 1980s.
- Any of the Indiana Jones franchise – Again, it’s not that I have any particular objection to the movies; I just never felt any kind of urgency about watching them.
- Gone With the Wind – I haven’t read the book either. I consider myself a Southern woman, and yet I have never seen Gone With the Wind OR Steel Magnolias. I know. I’m sorry.
- Psycho – I’ve seen clips of the shower scene – enough to scare me into being a lifelong bath-taker – but I’m not sure I’ve seen a single Hitchcock movie in its entirety. Psycho is Hitchcock, right? (Frantic Googling.) Yes. OK. See, I know some movie stuff.
- I don’t even know if I can admit this in the thick of the holiday season, but here goes: I’ve never seen It’s a Wonderful Life. In fact, it was on just the other night, and I was like, “Huh, what is this?” and Ruby, who is not yet 9, was like, “Mom. Really?” I honestly don’t even know the premise except that I think it involves a failed or else successful suicide? (Frantic Googling.) Yes! A thwarted suicide attempt. Much happier than the alternative. Hooray.
I really am hopeless about this. There are huge, huge gaps in my pop culture knowledge, but I’m mostly unbothered by it. I don’t have the attention span or the motivation, so unless it was required viewing as part of a class (Citizen Kane, The Graduate, Birth of a Nation), I never made it a priority.
I do have some time off over the holidays, though, so maybe I will finally rectify my shameful movie-watching past. (But probably not. I’ve made it 35 years without seeing Star Wars, so I don’t really plan to start now.)
Merry Christmas, everyone!