Yes Bette is delusional and revisionist and holds a grudge.
Her fans would have loved Bette in "Sister Act", but her VANITY did not want to be seen in a wimple and thought she deserved better acting roles. That role is Bette Midler. Mouthy Moll forced to go in hiding as a nun, begrudgingly bringing girl group arrangements to the Sister's Choir. Her fans would have loved it, she knows it and is being disingenuous. She's famous for that.
For someone with such a persona of "Fuck em if they Can't take a Joke" Midler has proven time and time again to be humourless and lacking in insight about her career and her talents.
She does have talents, but sold out a long time ago. For twenty years she has been selling a cynical version of the outrageous, quirky, kick-ass broad and great raw musical cabaret style performer she once was. She was the only one who did what she did. But she wanted more.
Her recordings became attempts to prove that she was a good a singer as she was a performer and therefor lost what made her live reedy plaintive voice special. Her affectionate, joyful send-ups of thirties, forties and fifties music styles turned into some idea that she was a great vocalist from the past. She determinedly lost her way.
As an actress, what is there to say. Diana Ross in "Lady Sings the Blues" is forty years later, still the true knockout performance of a singer taking on a high wire acting and musical challenge and surpassing anyone's expectations. Truly memorable and Oscar worthy. Not the Rose.
Bette's films as tasteless as most of them are utilized her hammy and maudlin talents well and the Disney comedies are just fine for what they are. Sister Act would have been a step up.
She is no Kathy Bates. Kathy Bates is a great actress who played an over the top obsessed character with her own quirky madness. Her performance in Misery resembles none of her other performances. She is an actress.
Bette Midler in Misery would resemble Bette Midler's hair in "Beaches" and her performance in the Rose, Stella, The Stepford Wifes and Ruthless People.
I used to like her, and have been to many of her concerts and bought the t-shirt, but although I am twenty years younger than her I outgrew her a while ago.
Bette is not happy. She found love and wide appeal acceptance, got her mainstream hit records and films, brought warmth and irreverence and zing to every personal appearance, was once audacious and a true original, and was therefor respected and an event. She was a definite, people responded or didn't. Her fans and many other performers love her. She crossed generations too and not only with gay men. She has so many devoted fans still.
All of this with only a modicum of vocal ability and an acting style that disappeared with the talkies.
Old Songs for the New Depression, Ms. Midler.