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更新时间:2019/2/18 20:46:46 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

The King of Pop — and Perversion

When Dan Reed ordered up a score for his documentary, he asked the composer to evoke the image of a shimmering sprite leading two boys deeper and deeper into an enchanted forest. The boys don’t notice that the trees grow menacing. And suddenly, the sprite turns into a monster.

当丹·里德(Dan Reed)找人为自己的纪录片配乐时,他向作曲家提出的要求是,要能唤起一幅闪着微光的精灵带领两个男孩走入魔法森林深处的画面。男孩们没有注意到那些树木看起来多么阴森。突然,精灵变成了一个怪物。

As “Leaving Neverland” shows, Michael Jackson spent his life shape-shifting from best pal, father figure and beneficent idol into cruel, manipulative rapist.

正如《离开梦幻庄园》(Leaving Neverland)一片所展现的,迈克尔·杰克逊(Michael Jackson)将自己的一生从好朋友、父亲式人物和仁慈的偶像,变成了残忍的、善于操纵的强奸犯。

It was apparent for decades that Jackson’s cotton-candy lair was sulfurous. But as with other monsters — Harvey Weinstein, Bill Cosby, R. Kelly, Woody Allen, Jeffrey Epstein and Bryan Singer — many turned a blind eye.

几十年来,杰克逊的棉花糖巢穴显然充满污秽。但就像对其他怪物一样——哈维·韦恩斯坦(Harvey Weinstein)、比尔·考斯比(Bill Cosby)、R·凯利(R. Kelly)、伍迪·艾伦(Woody Allen)、杰弗里·爱泼斯坦(Jeffrey Epstein)和布莱恩·辛格(Bryan Singer),许多人对此睁一只眼闭一只眼。

Celebrity supersedes criminality. How can you see clearly when you’re looking into the sun? How can an icon be a con?


It was easier to ignore a landscape designed as a spider web for child sexual abuse than to give up the soundtrack of our lives, the catchy songs that coursed through memories of weddings, bar mitzvahs and other good times.


“With Michael Jackson, you can see how grotesquely his fame, and our worship of fame, distorts and excuses and enables evil — to the point mothers fail to protect their children and literally throw them in harm’s way,” says Maureen Orth, who did groundbreaking stories in the ’90s for Vanity Fair about both Jackson and Allen.

“关于迈克尔·杰克逊,你可以看到他的名声,以及我们对名声的崇拜,如何离奇地扭曲、谅解和怂恿邪恶——到了母亲无法保护自己的孩子,将他们送入险境的程度,”上世纪90年代在《名利场》(Vanity Fair)杂志率先披露杰克逊和艾伦丑闻的莫琳·奥斯(Maureen Orth)说道。

Indeed, the most harrowing part of the new documentary about the shredded lives of two of Jackson’s victims is the complicity of their mothers. Jackson spent as much time grooming the mothers as the sons, to the point where the women saw nothing wrong in letting their children share a bed with a grown man. (The documentary, which left the audience stunned at Sundance last month, premieres on HBO next month.)


Reed is a Brit who made several documentaries about terrorism. He says he became practiced at leading victims gently back to their traumas, so they could use their minds as cameras to bring key moments to life, letting their faces and voices tell the stories.


And that is how the tragedies of James Safechuck and Wade Robson unfold, through the pain in their eyes and the confusion in their voices and the moments where they tear up or swallow hard.

通过詹姆斯·塞夫查克(James Safechuck)和韦德·罗布森(Wade Robson)眼中的痛苦、声音中的困惑,以及他们落泪或咽口水的瞬间,他们的悲剧就这样徐徐展开。

Safechuck, who works as a computer programmer, was raised in Simi Valley. He met Jackson when he was a 9-year-old child actor in 1987, starring with the singer in a Pepsi commercial. Jackson promised to make the boy the next Spielberg.


Robson, a dance teacher who did choreography for Britney Spears and ’N Sync, grew up on the other side of the world in Brisbane. He spent all his time dressing and dancing like Jackson. He won a dance contest in 1987 and got to meet Jackson, who was on tour in Australia, and dance onstage. Then, he was ensnared in the warped fantasy, a 7-year-old being initiated into sex at Neverland by the 31-year-old Jackson.

罗布森现在是一名舞蹈老师,曾给布兰妮·斯皮尔斯(Britney Spears)和超级男孩乐队(’N Sync)担任过舞蹈指导。他一直打扮成杰克逊的样子跳舞。1987年,他赢得了一场舞蹈比赛,结识了当时正在澳大利亚巡演的杰克逊,并在他的表演舞台上跳舞。之后,他落入了扭曲的幻想之中,在梦幻庄园,31岁的杰克逊让一个7岁的孩子了解了性。

The mothers, Stephanie Safechuck and Joy Robson, knew that Jackson was ensorcelling their sons, even as he lured the mothers out of the frame with luxurious enticements. But they were stage mothers and fans, so they chose to believe Michael was a kind, lonely little boy at heart, not a heartless pedophile, and they did not dig deeper when their sons said nothing bad was going on.

即便杰克逊用奢华的诱惑把母亲们引到一旁,两位母亲——斯蒂芬妮·塞夫查克(Stephanie Safechuck)和乔伊·罗布森(Joy Robson)——其实知道杰克逊是在迷惑她们的儿子。但她们是星妈和粉丝,所以她们选择相信迈克尔内心是个善良、孤寂的小男孩,而不是冷酷无情的恋童癖,当孩子说没发生什么糟糕的事情时,她们也没有深究。

“He flies you first class, you have a limo waiting for you at the airport, amazing, you know, it’s a life of the rich and famous,” Mrs. Safechuck gushes in the film, adding: “I got to meet Sean Connery. That was big for me. It was like, ‘Oh my God, Sean Connery!’” She also loved Neverland: “He had a beautiful wine cellar, really good wines, champagne, that was just something I enjoyed — it was a fairy tale every night.” After all, as she says, he was a genius and they were “just nobodies.” Jackson bought them a house after James testified on the singer’s behalf in a trial involving another boy.

“他给你飞头等舱,派豪华轿车在机场接你,你知道这很奇特,那是富豪和明星的生活,”塞夫查克夫人在影片里夸张地赞扬说,还说“我见到了肖恩·康纳利(Sean Connery)呢。那对我可是大事。那感觉就像,‘哦天哪,肖恩·康纳利!’”她也很喜爱梦幻庄园:“他有个很美的酒窖,特好的酒、香槟,那正是我所喜爱的——每晚都像是个童话故事。”毕竟,她说,他是个天才,而他们“只是无名之辈”。在詹姆斯在一桩涉及另一个男孩的审判中为歌手作证后,杰克逊给他们买了栋房子。

It somehow made sense to James’s mother when she was told that she couldn’t be near the hotel rooms her son and Michael shared in Europe because the nicer suites she would prefer were farther away.


As Wade Robson puts it, “What you’d think would be standard kind of instincts and judgment seemed to go out the window.”


His mother left Australia and his father and moved to L.A. with Wade and her daughter to be closer to Michael; the father later committed suicide. After Wade finally told a therapist and his wife and family what had happened, he was alienated from his mother for a time. Like James, Wade — who lied in court twice to protect the man he loved — had symptoms of trauma that intensified with the birth of his son. James’s hands shake as he shows a diamond ring that Jackson gave him for a private mock wedding. Wade had a nervous breakdown and stopped dancing for a time.


“I had one job” and messed it up, Mrs. Safechuck says. “My son had to suffer for me to have this life.”


Even with this shocking documentary, the Michael Jackson estate is still demonizing the victims and planning to bring a musical about Jackson’s life to Broadway in 2020.


Reed says he is “agnostic” about it: “Am I going to campaign to have Michael’s name removed from classrooms and his statues removed from shopping malls? No. Is this the right time to celebrate Michael as a legitimate good person you might want to emulate? Possibly not.”


And that is what’s known as British understatement.