Taking a quick break from reviewing films because I have to talk about this.

A few days ago, Ava DuVernay asked the question all film geeks have had to think about the past few weeks (paraphrasing): can we still love some of these artists if we believe they’ve committed these universally accepted wrongs?

My Twitter (i.e. 140 character) response was this:

Now let me elaborate…

I finally had time (and more importantly emotional space) to read Dylan Farrow’s letter today.  And it was everything I expected it to be. Shocking, and disgusting and sad.  Here’s the thing though.  This was one of the most public versions of that story I’ve heard.  But not the first time.  Or the second. Or the third, even.  I won’t go into further detail about who the women are who told me their stories, but I can tell you, like Dylan’s account, it’s not this Hollywood image of a stranger in a dark parking lot at 1 in the morning (that happens too of course), but in all the stories I’ve been trusted enough to hear about, it’s ALWAYS a male in the family.  So based on my own personal experience, it’s hard to complete dismiss Dylan’s account.

So does this change the way I look at Woody’s films?  At the moment that I write this…no.  The details are way more lurid and obscene than we’ve ever read, but if this is the first time you looked at Woody Allen’s personal life and said ‘He did WHAT?’, I think you missed some details on the way here.  And there is never a ‘good time’ for something like this to be brought to light or be talked about, so I’m trying real hard to not sound insensitive if you want to completely dismiss the man and the artist wholesale (which you have every right to feel).  Not to distract from the issue at hand, but I have in mind, ‘other’ artists, who ‘allegedly’ have similar sexual preferences, and have been unapologetically defiant about it (see interviews done by Toure, and songs like ‘Age Ain’t Nothin But a Number’, and ‘Seems Like You’re Ready’).  Woody Allen from what I’ve seen is defending his name against an unforgivable crime; he’s not saying ‘Yeah, so what, what’s the big deal?’

Timing wise, is this going to cost Cate Blanchett the Oscar?  I don’t know.  Does it matter?