Sports writer Pat Jordan‘s interview piece on Wrestler star Mickey Rourke in today’s N.Y. Times Magazine starts out fairly rough. In terms of his interview “performance”, he calls Rourke likable but clumsy, lost in his rap, emotionally insincere. In short Jordan isn’t buying the shpiel, which sets him apart from others who’ve written generally flattering profiles of Mickey-the-Comeback-Kid. A departure from the script.
“You meet Mickey, you can’t help liking him,” Jordan begins. “He rescues abused dogs! He cries a lot: over his stepfather’s supposed abuse; the loss of his brother to cancer and his dogs to old age; the failure of his marriage to the actress Carre Otis. He admits he destroyed his own career, because, as he puts it: “I was arrogant…I wasn’t smart enough or educated enough” to deal with stardom.
“He is candid about the people he has crossed paths with: Nicole Kidman is “an ice cube”; Michael Cimino, the director of Heaven’s Gate, “is crazy” and “nuts”; and the producer Samuel Goldwyn Jr. is “a liar.”
“So what if he cries at the same moment in the same story in every interview? So what if his candor sometimes sounds like the bad dialogue from one of his many bad movies (“I have no one to go to to fix the broken pieces in myself”) or that his self-deprecation seems culled from the stock stories of so many fading actors (“I was in 7-Eleven, and this guy says, ‘Didn’t you used to be a movie star?'”)? So what if he seems disingenuous, at best, when he says he can’t remember that critics nominated him one of the world’s worst actors in 1991 (“I probably would have voted with them”) or even making a terrible movie that went straight to video, Exit in Red, in 1996 — despite the fact that the love interest in that movie was then his wife?
“Mickey Rourke is, after all, an actor. The roles he has played and the life he has lived have so blurred one into another in his mind’s eye that even he doesn’t seem to know when he’s acting or when he’s being real. He has spent his entire adult life playing not fictional characters but an idealized delusional fantasy of himself.”
I don’t know if this piece is going to do much for Rourke’s Best Actor chances. I suspect that the die is cast on Rourke being nominated (i.e., it’ll happen) and this or that article isn’t going to change things in this regard.