I have Watson's book on the French as well. It's OK.
Never read his strategy books - heard mixed things.
Wolfgang Uhlmann. Great player, has dozens of simply
brilliant games on his CV.
I answered the OP. Know nothing about him and his current games are
still in the opening phase so have to assume, becaused he asked...
(...good player don't ask. When was the last time you saw Tebb, Atticus etc
coming on here pleading to help them with an opening?)
...that he is 1400-1600 (and ...cannot be bothered studying openings.) 😉
There is a difference between you looking at a GM game and him.
You mentioned Kengis and The Alekine.
My DB has 83 Alekhines by him W.16 D.43 B 24.
A good plus record as Black - average number of moves = 37.
Tells me the lad has a plus or = in the opening and squeezes home in the
Far too long for the games to be won soley in the opening. (25 moves max).
Let's look at those 16 losses. Not one under 38 moves. (ave 43 moves)
This lad knows this opening, he must be equalising and then getting done
in the middle game.
Cannot see much a 1400-1600 player can pick up here.
You are asking him to look at and understand GM middle games.
That is beyond 99% of us here.
"a good annotated GM game usually has "XXX is bad due to YYY."
Very very rarely. Your best bet is to stroll through under 2000 games
and see what's happening in the real world.
I Mentioned Davies, you Mentioned the Alekhine.
Davies has a book on the Alekhine.
From memory not one game before 1980 and the complete games list reads
like a GM's who is who with some games going deep into an ending. 😕
I'm not singling it out, most modern opening books follow this trend.
We want the chaff, the crap, the obscure, they stuff we are likely to face.
Not a pile of 'over our heads' GM games plodding on and on into endings.
"since you're never going to play more than 8 moves into most
openings at the amateur level."
Often relegated to 'Other White Tries' sometimes you do get
a chapter and one or two games with it.
A few GM's have spun this out but it is very common at the lower levels.
(You cannot argue with this Paul - I have you playing 28 Alekhines
and you have faced 2.Nc3 10 times - with two losses. ) 😉
2.Bc4 (not mentioned by Davies and giving just a small mention in other books)
For those of you who do not know the trick.
2...Nxe4 3.Bx7+ Kxf7 4. Qh5+
Winning back the piece.
Under 25 moves RHP has 27 White wins, 7 Draws, 30 Black wins.
In my main DB under 25 moves:
White=24 Draws = 15 Black = 22.
You will not be surprised to hear that I have no GM's games with this line.
My 2.f3 which has served me well in the past.
Does not rate a mention anywhere.
Except me and 2.f3 get a mention in 'Black is OK' by Adorjan. (a proper chess book) 😏
The plan being if 2....e5 3.f4! a pure Latvian!
So what benefit will the OP or most of us on here for that matter
get from looking at openings of GM games if:
A) They will face moves they have never seen before or
even been mentioned in GM notes.
B) They have to accept a middle game, not of their choosing and suddenly
play it like a Grandmaster.