Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Quote of the day: A Malibu "neighbor" of Mel Gibson's hopes he'll still let her live there after she's had her say


"Actual happiness runs on a different track from career success. And if you are a crazy narcissist full of self-hatred and unexamined rage, even being physically beautiful doesn't make things feel okay."
--Merrill Markoe, commenting on "Good neighbor Mel" on HuffingtonPost (with the caveat: "I have to be very careful about what I say on this matter as I am a resident of Malibu which apparently Mel owns. I was kind of hoping for permission to stay")

Ms. Markoe makes clear that she wasn't looking to write about her "neighbor," but was asked to by Ms. Huffington. And happily so. It is, not surprisingly, a very funny piece, with an interesting take. On both counts, you should read the whole thing, but here is the gist of her argument:

There is a cautionary tale being offered here about the amount of happiness that you can expect from the things our culture values most: personal beauty, show business success, and enormous wealth. Apparently based on this incident, there is also a subtext. And it's "Guess again." . . .

Come on: who on this planet got a better hand than Mel fucking Gibson? (Okay, Johnny Depp--but only Johnny Depp. . . . ) . . .

After he got bored with being
People's sexiest man alive and being cast in every conceivable kind of movie, from drama to action to comedy, (even though he's not actually funny) and was finished effortlessly making the transition to directing where he won awards and had endless additional opportunities, when his every creative whim wasn't being met within the existing studio system he was still able to go outside the system and produce a gorey eccentric dark horse religious flick that no one really believed would work--and still succeed beyond everyone's wildest dreams. Add to that a long stable marriage, a big intact family, and ownership of all of Malibu, and no wonder he's out driving around drunk in the middle of the night, looking for someone to hate!!

And therein lies the whole Hollywood conundrum. I've seen it over and over again. The message is this: Learn to be happy for other less superficial reasons. Because actual happiness runs on a different track from career success. And if you are a crazy narcissist full of self hatred and unexamined rage, even being physically beautiful doesn't make things feel okay. . . .

What do you do when the suits and the development people and the bankers and the government and the biggest executives in the country are all willing to do your bidding? Who can you count on to show up and use as your target in a pinch? Well, there are so many types of people to hate, but for those seeking a cozy bundle of racism issues, they always throw in Jews freeā€”like floormats when you buy a new car.

Will I still go see his movies? Probably not. Will he go into my creepy show biz file with Michael Jackson, Woody Allen and Gary Glitter? His chances are good at this point.

Will I make big gloomy judgmental faces at him if I see him at the local Starbucks? Well, it will depend on my mood and if he lets me continue to live in Malibu.

The real truth is that I learned early on not to give too much thought to things being yelled by drunks. Particularly if they're sitting in the back of a squad car. . . .

[Note: In case you don't recognize it, that's Mel's goddamn booking photo above. At the age of 50, after a goddamn drunken-driving binge.]


I haven't been publishing them but I've gotten quite a few anti-Semitic comments from Mel's hard-core fans, what Ken referred to as "his base." They all seem to want to agree that "the Jews" control the world and that Mel should have been more careful. Apparently ABC-TV's action in canceling Gibson's holocaust miniseries will confirm their worst fears. Disney, ABC-TV's parent, lamely attempted to make the cancellation look like a coincidence. "Given that it's been nearly two years and we have yet to see the first draft of a script, we have decided to no longer pursue this project with Icon," explained Hope Hartman, a Disney flak, referring to Gibson's production company.

Rabbi Marvin Hier, founder of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, who had previously criticized Gibbon's anti-Semitic film The Passion of the Christ, said he doesn't think it's appropriate for Gibson to make a movie about the Holocaust. "It would be like asking someone associated with the KKK to do a movie on the African-American experience." Ouch.


At 11:35 AM, Anonymous teach said...

She is right about Johnny Depp. :)

What a circus!!!

Mel may get rehabbed into being a human being. That would be cool.

I am the sort of person who believes that folks can change. I hope he is not one of John Dean's double highs (the nearly incontrovertable).

At 7:50 AM, Blogger keninny said...

Hey, Teach, I hope you read the full version of Merrill's musings on Johnny Depp and not just my expurgated version. She is charmingly vivid, but I thought it was just a bit off-topic for our purposes.

And just in case there was any confusion: The original item was posted by me, the "Tuesday Update" by Howie.



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