A man talks to a beaver puppet he wears on his hand.
" If you can get past your feelings for the troubled Gibson, you get to watch a high-wire performance of the highest caliber. "
" I respected The Beaver for having the conviction to treat mental illness seriously and without compromise. But did it have to be so maudlin, too? "
" If you continue to be fascinated by this talented, volatile, messed-up man, it's worth experiencing what may be Gibson's finest performance to date. "
" If anyone can see past the suggestive title, the oddball premise and the controversial casting of this film, they might be surprised to find it surprisingly tolerable. "
" Though Kyle Killen's script becomes trite and predictable, Gibson delivers in an uncompromising way. "
" The acting throughout -- Foster, Lawrence, Yelchin -- is superb, and this may well be Gibson's finest performance, just as it's Foster's most balanced job of directing. "
" The film is amusing, then melancholy, then weirdly funny, then not. It's a quiet, measured work. "
" You won't be the only one anticipating a car-crash appeal in The Beaver , that eerie sensation of not being able to look away from catastrophe. "
" I've rarely seen a movie about severe malcontents that ended on such a note of unearned uplift. "
" In The Beaver, a stately family drama with a black comedy struggling to break free from within, Mel Gibson deploys a seemingly magical hand puppet -- plus more charm than he's allowed out in public in years. "
" With The Beaver, Gibson shows that for all his personal turmoil, he still may have a career in the twilight years. "
" That this ambitious, if deeply odd, film is so compulsively watchable is a credit to Gibson's compelling performances, both as spiritless Walter and the Cockney-accented voice of the tireless title character. "
" For a film about the real problem of mental illness, it never feels authentic. Depression is not something neatly tied up. If this is meant as an allegory, it's vague and unconvincing. "
" It's a bummer of a movie -- dark and at cross-purposes with both itself and any image do-over [Gibson] might be seeking. "
" Gibson's performance as Walter Black ranks among the best of his career. "
" Beyond the initial idea, this is kid gloves filmmaking, when what we need is a bit more of the gloves-off stuff. "
" Despite some missteps, this film stands as a moving portrait of a husband and father who reclaims his will to live with the unlikely help of a hand puppet. And the main reason it's so moving? Mel Gibson. "
" "The Beaver" isn't a perfect film, but it's challenging and original. "
" Sure, there's lots of pretense but it's all the wrong kind -- just silliness posing as sensitivity pretending to be art. "
" Admittedly, Gibson is very good as the deeply disturbed hero - particularly as he sits alone slugging vodka or mourning the loss of his family's love. But is this really acting? Is it even a performance? "
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