Rent The Beaver (2011)

3.3 of 5 from 116 ratings
1h 27min
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Plagued by his own demons, Walter Black was once a successful toy executive and family man who's now lost his way. No matter what he tries, Walter cannot seem to get himself hack on track... until a beaver hand puppet enters his life.
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Kyle Killen
Getting to Know..., Getting to Know: Jodie Foster
Release Date:
Run Time:
87 minutes
English Dolby Digital 5.1
English Hard of Hearing
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 2.35:1
  • Audio commentary with director Jodie Foster
  • Everything is going to be okay – The making of The beaver
  • Deleted scenes with optional commentary by director Jodie Foster
  • The beaver: Interview with Mel Gibson

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Reviews (2) of The Beaver

Gibson gives a masterclass - The Beaver review by JD

Spoiler Alert

Mel Gibson is involved in all of my top 3 films (Gallipoli, Hamlet and Apocoliptica). I was expecting something good and was not disappointed by his acting of a suicidal alcoholic who becomes a teetotal schizophrenic. Not an easy acting task and could not have been done better. Jodie Foster is an actress I hold in a similar amount of awe. Her task however was a lot easier and to be frank could have been bettered. The direction was very average and spoiled a subtle exposition of a fragile mind, with an atmosphere of squeaky clean, suburban, leafy crassness.

0 out of 2 members found this review helpful.

Weirdly watchable, but despite a solid performance from Gibson, this sadly runs out of steam - The Beaver review by TB

Spoiler Alert

When you try to describe the plot of this film, there will always be bewildered faces staring back at you: “Errr so it’s about a successful CEO called Walter Black, who finds a beaver puppet, then has a mental breakdown, thinks the puppet is talking to him and then takes over his life. He is then alienated from his entire family and destroys his business, but finds the meaning he craves along the way...?” “Yes, basically.”

But this film is so weird and yet so straight-faced, that actually a lot of it works in a strange way. Gibson commits completely and utterly to this role, never once having an ounce of self-consciousness. The movie as a whole is also very well-directed by Jodie Foster, who also stars as Gibson’s wife.

But unfortunately, around the middle section of the film, things then just don’t work and start to fall apart. The premise, which just about held together up to that point, collapses. For example, there is simply no way that Walter would not have been sectioned. It’s all very well showing the toll Walter’s antics with the puppet take on his family, but any self-respecting and loving wife would have called the psychiatric emergency number to get her husband medical care. Then the final section, including a shocking act of violence, just pushes everything over the edge. When the film attempts redemption, it is done so nakedly and cynically that you just tune out.

But despite this, it’s still worth a watch. It is at times genuinely funny and maximum praise must go to Foster and Gibson for actually trying something new and really pushing the boat out. Sadly, on this occasion it was more miss than hit.

0 out of 0 members found this review helpful.

Critic review

The Beaver review by Alyse Garner - Cinema Paradiso

The Beaver is the much gossiped over Mel Gibson and Jodie Foster movie about a depressed toy maker who, in a rather sick twist, is forced to use a toy beaver puppet to help him with his anger issues.

The film was directed by starring actress Jodie Foster and has a rather quaint family undercurrent running through its comedy overtones, as the main character, Waller’s (Gibson) family try to accept his new beaver persona for the sake of the youngest child and sibling.

The film received limited box office openings due to the media coverage of leaked telephone messages left by Mel Gibson to an ex-girlfriend, however the studio deny that this incident had an impact upon the film’s release.

It is somewhat a blessing in disguise that the film received limited release however, as the most interesting aspect of it was the fact that the sheer madness of Gibson’s character is an interesting reflection on his own shifting public persona, which has gone from one of the hottest men in Hollywood to an over zealous and angry recluse.

The film has it’s moments of comedy but overall it deserves its 12A rating for the darkness that dwells within Gibson’s character. The representation of Waller’s depression is a little heavy handed however, and although Gibson gives an admirable performance it simply isn’t enough to raise the film into the dramatic and tragic status it so clearly desire

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