Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Dylan Farrow's Letter to the NYTimes

Dylan Farrow
Source:  NY Times

First, I must say, you have grown to be a beautiful, intelligent, and empathetic woman, Dylan. You are brave to write an open letter describing your sexual abuse at the hands of Woody Allen and I believe you.  Your truth rings loud and clear and you pose the correct question at the beginning and end of your letter.  I agree with your premise that we continue to honor a man who has done shameful things to you and probably to others.

In the name of art, we continue to praise Woody Allen and herald his lifetime achievements as if nothing had ever happened to you.  This is wrong.  

I remember loving Woody Allen films, especially when I was in college in the 70's.  He was the comedian and film director/producer of the times.  His movies were hilarious satires of our society and government and the governments of other countries as well.  He was able to get to the truth of all our insecurities in life and make fun of them, and we all felt better about ourselves because of his movies.

We followed all of Allen's love affairs in the tabloids.  Those quirky, charming women he seemed to attract and star in his movies we fell in love with too.   We envied those women and dreamed ourselves of starring in a Woody Allen film.  

But, that all came to a screeching halt for me when Woody Allen brazenly announced his love for Soon Yi Previn, his, I believe, 17 year old step-daughter with Mia Farrow, his lady and supposedly love of the moment.  I was stunned and outraged when he made the announcement.

To me, that was and is incest, plain and simple.  Both Allen and Soon Yi had betrayed your mother, Mia Farrow, in the most insidious way.  I realize Soon Yi and Allen are married and have been for about twenty years, and today are parents of teenagers, but I still cringe when I hear or see pictures of them in the tabloids.

I remember the sex abuse accusations by you through your mother, Mia, and I was sickened by the whole situation.  I lost all respect for Woody Allen.  I have not seen a Woody Allen film since that time in the 90's.  

While I would love to see Cate Blanchett's performance in Blue Jasmine,  I have not seen the movie because what Allen has done to your family sickens me.  I have to agree with your opinion in your letter.  How can these actors take part in his movies and the Hollywood establishment give him accolades and prizes?  How can we as a movie going public support his films?

I realize making movies is a business.  Allen has written great parts for these women actors and most women actors in Hollywood wish to star in an Allen movie as it boosts their career. But, when it comes to sexual abuse/incest that is where I draw the line and I believe Hollywood's actors should too.  It is heartbreaking that some of these actors were/are friends of your family and watched you grow up.  I don't know how they look you in the eyes.

You are brave and courageous to write this open letter to the New York Times, and I herald them for publishing it for you.  You have spoken your truth.  You have made a valid point in questioning the actors that continue to act in and support his films.  

Through his actions, Woody Allen has spoken his truth, incest is best, and what a sad truth that is.  May you continue to grow strong, Dylan, and move forward with your life.  You have made us all pause and think about what you have written, and if you have done that much, you have won your fight.

Copyright (c)  2014  Suzannah Wolf Walker   all rights reserved