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Trailer Talk: The Beaver

Trailer Talk: The Beaver

The redemption of Mel Gibson?
Dec 18, 2010
The Beaver
Genre: Drama Runtime: 91 minutes Country: USA, United Arab Emirates


Director:   Writer(s): 
Kyle Killen

Cast: , , , , ,

Where did you go Mel Gibson? You were so crazy cool in the Lethal Weapon films. You had your hard-boiled characters of vengeful action in Payback and Ransom. You delivered memorable moments of heroic leadership in epics Braveheart and The Patriot. Where are you now? With your hand up a beaver puppet begging for a second chance, that’s where.

Despite everything, is there a chance – even just a slim one – that the old Mel Gibson can make amends, and maybe – just maybe- make a comeback?

Watch the trailer after the jump!

The Beaver, directed by Gibson’s old friend and acting colleague Jodie Foster, seems to be about just that question, and it’s not subtle about making parallels between the fallen movie star and the character he plays here. Mel Gibson (Edge of Darkness) plays Walter Black, a clinical depressive whose life has come apart. We are shown a weary and teary-eyed Gibson looking stunned and droopy as the following quotes sum up how bad things have gotten for Gibson/Black:

“The successful and family man he used to be has gone missing. And no matter what he’s tried, Walter can’t seem to bring him back.”

“It’s a brain. Mom says yours got broken.”

“You’re sick. Do you want to get better?”

Black does want to get better, and so begins to use a beaver hand puppet as a psychological device to distance himself from the “negative aspects of his persona”. Jodie Foster, as well as directing the film also stars as Black’s wife, and as the trailer shows, is willing to fight to get Black (and presumably Gibson) better. Queue family drama of a flawed man’s redemption, by way of a somewhat ridiculous animal puppet.

If this isn’t a genuine attempt by Mel Gibson at some level of redemption, then it’s at least a very self-conscious publicity stunt designed to drag his name back from the pit of disrepute. The problem for this film however remains inseparably tied to Gibson himself, and how people will perceive The Beaver fits into the larger story of his notorious and heavily publicised outbursts in recent years. Who cares if the character of Walter Black has atoned for his sour past if Mel Gibson himself remains unwilling to address or acknowledge his own behaviour? Unless the film is accompanied by some level of public mea culpa – whether through some Barbara Walters interview or the like, the film may likely ring hollow. Even then, it will be difficult to tell whether the whole affair is really about Mel Gibson feeling sorry for himself instead of actually coming to terms with anything he’s done.

The Beaver film may yet hold some appeal to die hard Mel Gibson fans and the more forgiving people among us. For those of us who were fans of Gibson in the past however, the best we can probably hope for is this may be the first in a long and arduous process of redemption for the once admired actor. But don’t hold your breath.

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