Depression is a tricky subject for cinema, in that it takes the audience to dark places and is often not commercial. So – on the surface – the approach of Jodie Foster’s The Beaver is somewhat smart. When the main character – Walter Black (Mel Gibson) – is near suicidal, having him rediscover life through a hand puppet is not a bad starting point, as it can allow for fun to be made of a desperate situation. Alas, Foster – working from a script by Kyle Killen – never finds the humor in the situation that interesting. And even with Anton Yelchin and Jennifer Lawrence co-starring as people not going through depression as directly, even they get sucked into their own therapy sessions. Our review of The Beaver on Blu-ray after the jump.
The Beaver marks Jodie Foster’s return to the director’s chair, 15 years after her last feature film, Home for the Holidays. While both films tell a family story, the one in The Beaver explores depression and its effects on not only the person affliction, but all those who love them. Plagued by his own demons, Walter Black (Mel Gibson) has gone from being a successful toy executive to a man suffering so greatly from depression that he can no longer communicate with his wife (Jodie Foster) or two sons. Walter seems unable to get himself back on track, until he comes across a beaver hand puppet that he uses to reconnect with the world again. At the same time, his eldest son Porter (Anton Yelchin) is so afraid that he’s going to end up like his father that he documents even the smallest detail, to make sure that he does not turn out the same way.
At the film’s press day, actress/director Jodie Foster talked about why she wanted Mel Gibson for the role of Walter Black, choosing the right puppet and finding its voice, the challenge of acting in a film you direct, balancing work and motherhood, the appeal of doing a role in Neill Blomkamp’s next film Elysium, and the hope that she will find another directing gig soon. Check out what she had to say after the jump:
Depression is a difficult condition to explore in modern American cinema because no one wants to be around depressed people. We can see characters be sad, but only if they were happy before and will rally and be happy again by the time the movie ends. But an honest look at someone suffering from depression is rare and on that count The Beaver deserves acclaim. Unfortunately, despite the confidence of Kyle Killen’s script, director Jodie Foster never manages to bring a thoughtful vision the film. Even worse, no chemistry is developed between the characters, which is a serious issue when you’re making an intimate family drama. Individually, the actors do a terrific job, but the story never finds the emotional core that ties them together.
Anton Yelchin is certainly one of Hollywood’s fastest rising young actors, with an eclectic resume made up of varied and interesting characters, in both big studio blockbusters and small indie dramas. In The Beaver, he plays Porter Black, the oldest son of a very depressed man (Mel Gibson), who turns to a puppet to find the ability to communicate with his family, friends and business associates. In the remake of Fright Night (due out in theaters on August 19th), he plays a teenager who is convinced that his new neighbor (Colin Farrell) is a vampire. And, before he returns to the role of Chekov in the sequel to Star Trek, he will take on the title role of Odd Thomas, about a short-order cook with clairvoyant abilities who tries to prevent crime.
During a recent exclusive interview with Collider, that was done at the press day for The Beaver, Anton Yelchin talked about why he wanted to do the film, how it took longer to unwind from taking on such intense subject matter, and how much he enjoyed working with both Jodie Foster and Mel Gibson. He also talked about how he’s looking forward to returning to Chekov and getting to read the Star Trek 2 script, and what attracted him to Odd Thomas, which he starts filming soon. Check out what he had to say after the jump:
New posters have gone online for the animated film Dorothy of Oz and Jodie Foster’s The Beaver. The poster for Dorothy of Oz can be considered a long-lead teaser that lets audiences know who is voicing the film. However, the 3D animated musical isn’t due out until 2012. As for The Beaver, the new poster shows that in Argentina, it will be called “The Double Life of Walter”.
Hit the jump to check out both posters. Dorothy of Oz features the voices of Lea Michele, Martin Short, Dan Aykroyd, Kelsey Grammer, and Patrick Stewart. The Beaver stars Mel Gibson, Jodie Foster, Anton Yelchin, and Jennifer Lawrence. The film hits theaters in limited release on May 6th.
With director Jodie Foster’s The Beaver world premiering at SXSW tonight, Summit Entertainment has released the first three clips. Starring Mel Gibson as a man who starts to treat a beaver hand puppet as a living creature after he begins to suffer from depression, The Beaver has been repeatedly delayed due to Gibson’s controversial behavior. However, if the film plays well at SXSW tonight, perhaps the delay will help Summit at the box office.
While I know Gibson has a lot of issues and some of the things that he’s done and said are crazy, I’ve always been a fan of his work and I’m going to try and keep his professional and private life separate. But I’m probably in the minority. Hit the jump for the clips. The Beaver also stars Anton Yelchin (Star Trek) and Jennifer Lawrence (Winter’s Bone).
I can hardly wait to see The Beaver, but it looks like I’ll have to. This bizarre Mel Gibson movie will premiere at the SXSW Film Festival in early March, and was originally scheduled for limited release March 23 followed by wide release starting April 8. The SXSW premiere remains intact, but Summit Entertainment has delayed the limited release until May 6, with plans to open The Beaver wide May 20.
According to THR, there are two primary reasons for the delay. Director/star Jodie Foster is shooting Roman Polanski’s God of Carnage until mid-March, and the new release date frees her up to work the promotional circuit. Secondly, the studio hopes to capitalize on two months worth of good buzz from SXSW. Hit the jump to read the official synopsis for The Beaver, which stars Anton Yelchin (Star Trek) and Jennifer Lawrence (Winter’s Bone) alongside Gibson and Foster.
We previously announced that Moon director Duncan Jones’ upcoming film Source Code would be opening the 2011 South by Southwest Film Festival, and now the list of films that will be featured in Austin has started to trickle out. Jodie Foster’s The Beaver and the documentary Conan O’Brien Can’t Stop will have their world premieres at the festival. In addition, the Simon Pegg and Nick Frost starrer Paul will have its North American premiere at the festival. The Beaver stars Mel Gibson and centers on a man’s journey to re-discover his family and re-start his life. Conan O’Brien Can’t Stop is a documentary by Rodman Flender that follows behind-the-scenes of Conan’s summer tour. Film Conference and Festival Producer Jane Pierson had this to say:
“As we continue to solidify the lineup for 2011, it’s truly exciting to be able to announce this little taste of the program. Each of these films really showcases an artist stretching their wings in some way, whether it be a late-night talk show host taking his act on the road, an actress/filmmaker carefully and beautifully tackling a heartbreaking subject in her finest work yet, or a successful photographer trying out a new medium in a new landscape.”
Hit the jump to check out the full press release, which includes a list of six films that will be featured at the festival. The 2011 SXSW Film Conference and Festival runs from March 11 – 19th in Austin, Texas.
by Jeff Ames Posted: December 15th, 2010 at 7:27 pm
Does anyone really hate Mel Gibson? I know I sure don’t. Regardless of what he’s done, he’s still a damn fine actor. Perhaps that’s why the first trailer to Jodie Foster’s The Beaver looks so intriguing, what with Gibson’s depressed character utilizing a beaver puppet to combat his gloomy depression – maybe the Oscar-winning actor just needed a little love. Or maybe he truly is bat-shit crazy. Regardless, Summit has seen fit to release The Beaver this upcoming March, solidifying a previous rumor that mentioned spring as a likely candidate for the film.
According to the 24 Frames, The Beaver will open in select cities on March 23, 2011 before opening up to a wider audience on April 8th, suggesting a certain amount of trepidation on the studio’s behalf. Or maybe they just want to build some in-house buzz before unleashing such a risky venture on a mainstream audience. Either way, The Beaver is coming! Hit the jump to read the synopsis.
Yesterday, we reported on the first official image and synopsis for Jodie Foster’s upcoming film, The Beaver. Now, Summit Entertainment has released the first trailer for the film, which stars Mel Gibson as a man who starts to treat a beaver hand puppet as a living creature after he begins to suffer from depression. The film has been the center of a lot of debate due to Gibson’s recent behavior. A lot of people have been wondering if Summit would bench the film even longer, or if they’d release it as is. But with Summit setting a spring 2011 release date, it looks like we’ll all get to see Gibson’s latest quite soon. Of course the big question is, will Gibson’s controversial antics cause moviegoers to avoid his movies, or will they forgive and forget?
The Beaver also stars Jodie Foster, Anton Yelchin (Star Trek), and Jennifer Lawrence (Winter’s Bone). You can watch the trailer and read a plot synopsis for the film after the jump.
There’s been a great deal of discussion over how Summit Entertainment will handle Jodie Foster’s new film The Beaver ever since audio of Mel Gibson’s hate-filled tirades towards his ex-girlfriend ended up online. There’s always cause for concern when the audience sees your lead actor and can hear him saying the words “You look like a fucking pig in heat and if you get raped by a pack of n***ers it will be your fault.” It also doesn’t help if your crazy, racist lead actor is playing a character who treats the Beaver puppet on his hand like a living creature.
But Summit is pressing ahead and have now released the first official image from the film along with the official synopsis. Hit the jump to check it out along with news about when the film may be hitting theaters.
With the American Film Market (AFM) starting today in Los Angeles, we’ve been posting an enormous amount of promo posters and first synopses from a wide assortment of movies. Due to the amount that we’ve been posting, we think there is a good chance you might have missed some of the posters and info over the course of the day. So to make sure you’re all caught up, here’s links to all our AFM coverage. Look for more tomorrow:
- Posters and Synopses for STEP UP 4EVER 3D, BROTHER’S JUSTICE, HYBRID, and SOMETHING BORROWED
- First Poster and Tons of New Images from Sarah Polley’s TAKE THIS WALTZ Starring Seth Rogen, Michelle Williams and Sarah Silverman
- Posters and Synopses for THE THREE MUSKETEERS, SOURCE CODE, and MAN ON A LEDGE
- First Posters and Synopses for Keanu Reeves’s GENERATION UM… and Ashley Greene and Kellan Lutz’s A WARRIOR’S HEART
- First Poster for Aardman’s ARTHUR CHRISTMAS
- First Posters and Plot Synopses for THE COLD LIGHT OF DAY and THE GARDENER
- THE BEAVER Poster and Synopsis Starring Mel Gibson
- Updated THE TWILIGHT SAGA: BREAKING DAWN PARTS 1 & 2 Synopsis Released at AFM
- FilmDistrict Acquires DRIVE Starring Ryan Gosling, Christina Hendricks, and Carey Mulligan
- First Poster and Synopsis for THE IMPOSSIBLE Starring Naomi Watts and Ewan McGregor
- First Image and Synopsis for Tom Hanks’ LARRY CROWNE
- First Poster and Synopsis for Terrence Malick’s THE TREE OF LIFE
- Posters for THE KING’S SPEECH, THE CHRONICLES OF NARNIA: THE VOYAGE OF THE DAWN TREADER, and THE ILLUSIONIST
- Scarlett Johansson to Play Sexy Alien in Jonathan Glazer’s UNDER THE SKIN
by Tommy Cook Posted: November 3rd, 2010 at 7:39 pm
A detailed description and poster for the controversial Mel Gibson/hand-puppet film The Beaver was just released by Summit at AFM (American Film Market). The film stars Mel Gibson as a manic-depressive, who in attempt to quell his inner turmoil, begins to wear a hand beaver puppet. The Beaver, directed by Jodie Foster (Little Man Tate), also features Anton Yelchin (Star Trek), Jenifer Lawrence (Winter’s Bone) and Foster herself in supporting roles.
Currently The Beaver is without a release date, in no small part due to all the controversy surrounding Gibson at the moment. Be warned that the released synopsis seems to give away the entire plot of The Beaver. Hit the jump to check out Mel Gibson’s furry inanimate costar and to read the synopsis.
Sometimes the “Mel-Gibson-is-Crazy” stories just write themselves. I have no idea how he’d ever go about reclaiming his credibility so I guess he’s the ideal choice to lead a movie about a man who goes around with a beaver puppet on his hand and treats it like a real animal. You can just snap some photos and even if you didn’t explain that Gibson was doing this for a movie, people would still shrug and say, “Yep, that Mel Gibson sure is crazy.”
I know I’ve said this many times before but I think Anton Yelchin is one of the best, (if not THE best) young actors working today. Hit the jump as I once again proclaim my love for his acting (oh, he’s a cutie for sure, but he’s just not my type in that he’s a guy) and why his new role combined with the casting of Mel Gibson in Jodie Foster’s “The Beaver” will undermine the film’s intent.