Saturday, February 8, 2014

Love and Betrayal: The Mia Farrow Story (1995)

This incredibly strange artifact from the mid-'90s is due to resurface in a big way, and in fact I'm surprised it hasn't up to now. (Am I the first to notice?) It's an awful soaper, poorly-acted and melodramatic, and clearly takes sides against Woody (so maybe he's trying to somehow keep it out of public view? Fat chance!). But as a curiosity, it's very. . . curious. Obviously a poorly-made TV movie wouldn't hurt Woody Allen one bit, nor will any of the crap that's going on right now, as abusive patriarchs virtually always walk free, their reputations only enhanced by "restoring their good name".

Facebook is crawling with this awful stuff now (round 2 of what Allen has always called the 'What Scandal?'), and it's horribly fascinating. Did Woody "do it"? Well, what does "do" mean? It is painfully obvious that he did things to Dylan that were intrusive and damaging to a little girl's boundaries/self-esteem. To muddy the waters, Mia Farrow KNEW he was doing those things, and aside from making him go to therapy to "deal with his feelings about Dylan," she did nothing to stop him. She saw him making Dylan suck his thumb (one of the creepiest things I've ever heard of), saw him lie with his head in her lap, facing her, so that his face would be buried in her crotch. And his hairs were found in that infamous attic, to which Allen replied (after lying that he'd never been in there), "I might have stuck my head in there."

I think the public has always seen Mia Farrow as something of a saint, taking impoverished, damaged Third World children into her home to give them a second chance. All very admirable, but that doesn't change the fact that she stayed with a creepy, abusive man for twelve years in the face of dozens of red flags. And it doesn't change the fact that she may have stayed with him  to keep her newly-revived career going. Allen had crowned her the new Diane Keaton, a heady position indeed, but it's just one of the strange things he likes to do with chicks. They're his little dolls, and he can manipulate them any way he wants, professionally, sexually, any-old-way. It makes my blood run cold.

But sometimes these things don't stay buried, and the fallout is generally awful for everyone (see Michelle Phillips and her sad attempt to "heal" her family, blowing the whole thing to pieces). Is there a way to win? Not by soapboxing on either side. Maybe by crawling up out of the muck and leading a satisfying life?

Be happy. Drives your enemies crazy.


  1. Don't forget, Mia was 19 when she married Frank. Saint? I don't think so.

    She probly simply got tired of dressing up like Bo Peep for Woody whenever he wore his Sleeper suit for their trysts.

  2. I'm thinking of this Sleeper suit

    I'd forgotten about this image: Gadzooks!

  3. In these cases, there's usually a "good guy" and a "bad guy", not because of the actual situation but because human nature dictates that there must be a villain. Often it's not even the person accused of the abuse. The accuser is demonized for even THINKING such a thing about such a wonderful man. The Sleeper suit looks like a new line of Munsingwear (with plenty of legroom).

  4. I'm so suspicious of all rich people I'm willing to believe they practice almost any perversion imaginable.