The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

You Had Me at ‘Mariel Hemingway’

Posted on | May 22, 2014 | 56 Comments

When I learned that Mariel Hemingway was among the celebrities caught in James O’Keefe’s latest video sting, politics briefly disappeared into a sort of fog of nostalgic imagination: Mariel Hemingway!

Oh, that was a name to conjure with, back in the day!

It wasn’t just her striking beauty, although Mariel’s face seemed as if it had been sculpted by an artist — such cheekbones! More than her mere beauty, there was a frisson of the taboo about Mariel Hemingway in the era of my youth. My senior year in high school, she made her film debut at age 15 (with her older sister Margaux) in the twisted psycho-thriller Lipstick. Then in 1979 — I was a sophomore in college — she played Woody Allen’s teenage lover in Manhattan (which, as weird as it seemed at the time, seems much creepier in retrospect). Then in 1982, at a time when lesbianism was still very much an exotic idea, she played a bisexual track star in Personal Best.

All of this is to explain why the name “Mariel Hemingway” pings a certain mental resonance, so to speak, even now that I’m middle-aged and she is, too. It’s strange how memory freezes an image, an idea, in the mind this way. When I was young, grown-ups would talk about Elizabeth Taylor as a famous beauty, and I just didn’t see it. Not until many years later, when I saw her in A Place in the Sun (1951) did I realize what all the fuss was about: Wow! Legendary hotness!

(The same factor operates with women’s memories of teen idols, by the way. My high-school Latin teacher, Miss Dismer, had a lifelong crush on Michael Landon, who had been starring in her dreams since she was a young girl watching “Little Joe” on Bonanza.)

Anyway, now you know why Mariel Hemingway’s name caught my attention when I learned about the latest Project Veritas video:

The video features an undercover journalist from Project Veritas posing as “Muhammad,” a member of a Middle Eastern oil family, offering $9 million in funding to American filmmakers to fund an anti-fracking movie. He was joined by a second undercover activist posing as an ad executive.
O’Keefe entraps actor Ed Begley Jr., actress Mariel Hemingway, and director Josh Tickell, who agree to the film while promising to hide the source of the funds.
The undercover activist tells the group that “if Washington, D.C., continues fracking, America will be energy-efficient, and then they won’t need my oil anymore.”
In a phone call to Tickell, the “ad executive” states, “My client’s interest is to end American energy independence; your interest is to end fracking. And you guys understand that?”
Tickell’s response: “Correct. Yes, super clear.”
The environmental team even submitted a video of Oscar-nominated actor Mark Ruffalo offering his unwavering support for the fictitious anti-fracking film project.

More at Powerline: James O’Keefe Punks Hollywood Greens.

It’s sad that Mariel Hemingway grew up to be an America-hating Commie environmentalist wacko, but we’ll always have Star 80, eh?

 

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