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Shockingly, Gibson Not One of Beaver's Many Problems

Jodie Foster directs film about depressed man and his puppet
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted May 6, 2011 10:11 AM CDT

(Newser) – Jodie Foster directs The Beaver, the story of a seriously depressed man who starts speaking by way of a beaver hand-puppet. The film’s not great, but Mel Gibson is at the top of his game:

  • "There are all kinds of problems with The Beaver. Ironically, Mel Gibson isn't one of them,” writes Betsey Sharkey in the Los Angeles Times. It’s “an emotional runaway of a film that carries neither the insight nor the uplift to make the weight of its dark journey worth it.”

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  • Gibson is impressive, notes Lou Lumenick in the New York Post. “This bizarre little movie is all over the place as drama—but genuinely compelling as a one-of-a-kind piece of public self-flagellation.”
  • Manohla Dargis, writing in the New York Times, observes that “a promising story about a madman and his puppet fast becomes a trite tale of a father and son.”
  • “As good as Gibson is,” writes Roger Ebert in the Chicago Sun-Times, “his character is still caught between the tragedy of the man and the absurdity of the Beaver.”
(Read more Mel Gibson stories.)

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