Picking this story up in the UK’s Daily Mail, Helen Mirren says she was ‘disappointed’ not to be targeted in the iCloud photos theft.
Two points. The ‘comments’ section of the article sees someone suggest ‘no one wants to see naked old ladies’. I’m not certain how old (or how bright) the commentator is, but the fact is that all naked bodies are beautiful, regardless of their age or size. Of course, the Daily Mail attracts a phalanx of low-intellect, reactionary, right-wing readers who really shouldn’t be allowed to comment on anything (online or in real life) without it being run past someone sensible, so in that regard we can dismiss the remark(s).
The second point is that Helen Mirren is a wonderfully level-headed woman and terrific actress who has previously admitted to being a naturist. Thus, she seems entirely comfortable with her own body image.
Dame Helen has a long history of being nude in film. I’d be interested to know if her regular forays into the world of public (or on set) nudity pushed her in the direction of naturism, or if she was pre-disposed to naturism prior to her film career. She would have begun her career at a time when, perhaps even more than now, stripping off was ‘vital to the plot’, in the words of many a director. Vital to the film’s economics, in many cases too, as without showing a bit of celebrity boob, some films had little going for them.
Helen Mirren in the film ‘Savage Messiah’
Helen Mirren in the film ‘Calendar Girls’
There’s no doubt about it. She’s a wonderfully talented actor and in many ways an exceptional, positive role model for older women to say ‘yes, I can feel comfortable in my own skin too’.
Next week, I’ll be surrounded by naked people on a naturist holiday, many around the same age as Helen Mirren, or older. And they, too, will be entirely comfortable in their own skins, stripped of the sense of uncertainty that youth brings to a naked body. And while there is a social fixation on youth and what youth is doing with their lives, they’re often a much more uninteresting sample of humanity. My naturist companions, mostly in their 50s, 60s, 70s and beyond, have lost that false modesty. ‘Here I am’, they seem to say, ‘complete with operation scars, melanoma removals, wrinkled, sagging…but ALIVE!’. And regardless of age, or size or shape, that is what naturism empowers us with; the sense of being fully alive.
I sense that Dame Helen was partly tongue-in-cheek about not being on the leaked list, but her response to the list shows that, had she been included, she would certainly have owned the situation while some of the unfortunate younger victims of this theft have seemed owned by the revelations. Granted, I’ve not seen the leaked photos, so I’m not sure how ‘explicit’ they are in being described as ‘explicit’. Sexual in nature? That’s a different tale. But if it’s only a case of them being nude (which doesn’t excuse the thefts), then it seems that those who’ve faced the situation head-on are currently ahead of the game.
Anyway, for her naturism, and for the body positive image she promotes, she certainly qualifies as one of our heroes of naturism.