John, As you probably can guess, I prefer the straight version too, though I'd use Photoshop to soften the background and emphasize the subject since the shot wasn't made with an aperture that would reduce depth of field enough.
I don't particularly like texturing of photographs in Photoshop or in the darkroom. But your idea that all you can do in a darkroom is dodge and burn tells me you've never done much darkroom work. The idea of the kind of sharpening we do with Photoshop, for instance, came from the darkroom procedure called "unsharp mask (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unsharp_masking
)." Photoshop even calls it that. I'd go so far as to say that anything you can do in Photoshop with a monochrome image you can do in a well set-up darkroom, though doing those things in a darkroom requires a lot more time and a lot more hassle. If that statement breaks down it breaks down in color, where you need an incredibly expensive color darkroom setup to do even the simplest color manipulations. But they can be done. You just need a lot of money and a lot of time, which, by they way, the movie industry always has had in spades -- the money at least.
But you, of all people -- the soft-focus master -- would be the last person I'd expect to hear object to Photoshop manipulation. As a prime example I refer to your "remembering," which you put on User Critiques today -- the same day you wrote this critique.
In the end, though, you're right: It's a matter of personal opinion.