An Open Letter to Kevin Costner

To put this in some perspective, I’ve seen Waterworld, 3000 Miles to Graceland, and the Postman. That should be all the perspective necessary. If not, go watch those movies, preferably drunk, then come back and read.

 

Dear Mr. Costner;

 

You know, its funny. I really wanted to just type “Shut Up” and leave it at that. I wanted to tell you because when I think about you, all I want you to do is shut your bile-spewing trap. At least, I did. Now, however, after reflecting upon our bizarre actor-fan (and I do consider myself a fan) relationship, I have come to a slightly different conclusion. I have come to realize, that despite movies that had made me want to scoop out my eyeballs with a coring spoon, movies that had made me laugh so hard I wanted to cry – ironically to keep me from actually crying – and one movie in particular that gave me violent diarrhea, that you actually could be my favorite actor of all time. I know, Kevin. I’m stunned too.

You see, my family has a time-honored tradition of watching bad movies purely for their comedic value. We’ve sampled such delights as The Adventures of Pluto Nash and From Justin to Kelley – you know, real gems. But perhaps none gave us the amount of thrills as your post-apocalyptic juggernaut The Postman. Oh, and how we laughed! A Sooth-off between your character and the Hitler-allegory villain, a slow-motion horse ride to pick up a little boy’s letter, and character named Ford Lincoln Mercury – it was great stuff. The Postman wasn’t the worst we’d seen, but it was our favorite. My new catch phrase was “Shut UP Kevin Costner!” I made fun of your slow-mo horse ride. I acted as the director of the movie, pretending to hang myself at the credit roll. All was well in the universe. I could think of no greater insult to someone then to refer to them or their transgression as being “So Kevin Costner.” We were already looking at your other flops, hoping to score half the comedy booty with Waterworld and 3000 Miles to Graceland. Yes, Kevin, all was well. You were the hemorrhoids on the ass of the film industry, and I was on top of the world.

Then, one fateful night, I had dinner with my family. It was supposed to be a happy occasion. My younger sister was entering adulthood, the whole family was together – again, all was well. I was at peace. As is usual, we were discussing our plans for our next bad movie night. It was assured that when I acquired Waterworld, that it had to be the next one. We brought you up, Kevin, as we often do. My mom mentioned that you and your band were going to be playing here in Omaha. I joked that we should get tickets and heckle you (I was still the fool.) Of course, at that time, I had not, nor had any plans ever to pay more than 38 cents for any piece of work you’ve ever done. My mom responded to me that she thought we should go –AS FANS. TO SUPPORT YOU.

I was shocked into silence. I told my mother and sister that they were dead to me, I refused to acknowledge it. I hated them for falling into your charming trap, Kevin, and most of all I hated you with such an intensity that neither Dolly Parton nor Sly Stallone could ever come up with a simile that was asinine enough for it. I went to bed angry, Kevin, and we both know that’s never a good thing.

As soon as I woke, I was ready to prove to them that you were nothing but a sub-par actor riding the waves of one good movie made famous by a big black guy – you were no different than all the others, just a hack who was of no more value to anyone than what we reduced you to the night we watched the Postman. I opened my laptop and went straight to IMDB.com, and I typed your name, letter by letter, a growing need for revenge in my heart. I was going to show them all. You came up immediately. No lag today. It was going to be a good day. The day I conquered you. Boom! Your filmography was there in an instant. I began to read. A smirk grew on my face as I read all of the atrocities you had committed, one by one, thinking about how I only ever liked one of your films – Field of Dreams. Yes, I thought. Yes! Proof of your treachery. And then, much like your career in the mid-90s – it all came crashing down.

I realized very quickly that I had been a fool. I had forgotten, Kevin, forgotten these things that you’ve done. (Yes, that was a Killers reference. Sorry.) Yes, the crap was there. But – Oh, my Goodness – The Untouchables, Tin Cup, Thirteen Days, Bull Durham, Wyatt Earp – good movies. Not good movies, great movies.  I sat, stunned, for a half hour, on my broken office chair, in a stupor equal to any given moment in Matthew McCoghaney’s dismal life. And then, like a lightning bolt that I wish would hit Mariah Carey, I realized that I….whew….its still hard for me to say, Kevin – I don’t hate you. In fact, I like you. When you’re good, you’re awesome. When you’re bad, you are still awesome. I know. It was intense realization.

So Kevin, I know that a lot of this letter has been rude, mean, and downright confusing. Ultimately though, I have to admit it – I am a fan. Thank You, Kevin Costner. No matter what, keep making films. Keep making all kinds of films, anything and everything you can. I would be happy if you made films until your dying day.

 

Gratefully Yours,

 

 

Mary Finochiaro

 

PS: SHUT UP, KEVIN COSTNER.

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