Sunday, December 5, 2010

Trailer: The Beaver

Sometime in 2009 we began to hear tales of The Beaver, a supposedly stellar script making the rounds in Hollywood.  At one point, Steve Carell was attached to star, then the film was dropped.  The script then began to ride a wave of internet buzz, with many insiders still all a twitter about its potential.  To everyone's surprise, the project was picked up by Jodie Foster, who decided to serve double duty as director and star.  She cast Maverick co-star Mel Gibson opposite her, and, in the wake of a never ending stream of super-crazy scandal, it should come as no surprise that most sources sort of think that was a huge mistake.  Yet, for all Gibson's inexcusable behavior, it is possible that he stumbled into the one role that could get his madman antics working to his advantage.   The Beaver (as Vulture reported last year) is a family drama of the dark and twisted variety, presumably darker than the rather sentimental trailer suggests.   Its story follows a man estranged from his family who botches his suicide attempt and begins to communicate through (and hold conversations with) a beaver puppet with a British accent.

Could this be the film that allows Mel Gibson (and to some extent Jodie Foster) a partial comeback?  No one wants to see Gibson as the hero anymore.   His rantings, ravings, and the charges thrown at him by his ex-girlfriend, Oksana Grigorieva have seen to that.  But, if the film is warped enough, if it acknowledges enough of the disturbed tendencies of the actor, can Gibson find redemption in a more palatable version of his own lunacy?

I don't think he can, but I'll admit that I'm really quite intrigued by the premise of this film, as well as the casting.  It's risky.  If the story takes as many risks as Foster did involving Gibson at all, the film could really pay off.  If not...well...I guess we won't get to add "he was really pretty good in that puppet movie, though"  to every conversation about Mel Gibson.

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