Sunday, November 10, 2013

The Beaver (2011)

After Mel Gibson's drunken anti-semitic rant, Alan Smithee found it hard to look at his stupid face, and when Gibson returned to film in Edge of Darkness (2010), he skipped it. Fortunately, it looked lame.

The Beaver starts intriguingly, with Gibson's Walter Black turning to puppetry to cope with his unsatisfying life. Gibson doesn't immediately nauseate, perhaps because he sounds less dumb with an English accent, and perhaps because the role feels like a punishment. Watching a drunk Mel berate himself with a beaver puppet feels satisfying.

The film takes a wrong turn in the second act, devolving from a quirky independent film with potential psychological insight into something a lot like Magic (1978). The film tries to be about Walter Black's relationship with his oldest son, but it doesn't contain the scenes to accomplish that.

Could this film help Mel win back film lovers disgusted by his bigotry? Alan Smithee must admit that he is a little less sickened by Mel after watching this. Kudos, weirdo.

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