Rebel Rourke

I read Goldstein's piece and I understood why not many people attend Rourke's movies. He seems to feel his impoverished roots somehow justify rebellion and snobbishness. He invokes Brando, Hollywood's ultimate snob, and Al Pacino, who Rourke says "held onto his roots and never sold out."

It is sad that Rourke, Pacino and others see childhood poverty as a badge of honor they must be loyal to. If Henry Fonda and Spencer Tracy had believed such nonsense, their careers could have been severely handicapped. Although Fonda and Tracy played poor men, their characters often sprang from the native soil of rural American and had a spiritual nobility.

What selling out is, actually, is a willingness to be used by class-conscious industry bigots to give slumming audiences characters they can feel morally superior to.

JOHN PRIMAVERA

San Diego

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