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Mel Gibson's The Beaver: Can We Really Call It a Flop?

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Mel Gibson is looking to make his long climb back up the Hollywood ladder after destroying his already-sullied reputation last summer. His new movie “The Beaver” debuted in theatres last weekend and critics are hailing his performance, but certain publications are declaring the film a "flop."

The movie, directed by Jodie Foster is Gibson’s first film since his series of phone call tapes were released by Radar Online.com. The release of these tapes last summer all but destroyed Gibson's career. And, it will take him possibly years to make it back. There is even a possibility he may never make it back.

The Beaver, is a film about a depressed man named Walter Black (played by Gibson) who relies on a beaver puppet to help turn his life around after hitting rock bottom. In a way, the film is in some ways a mirror image of his real life - as he plays a character with alcohol and mental issues. His career is at rock bottom and should he receive an Oscar nomination it could catapult him back up the Hollywood food chain.

In America - many people forgive and ultimately forget.  I'll never be one to defend Gibson's actions, but there are many in Hollywood who have done far worse (i.e. Roman Polanski). And, if Michael Vick deserves a second chance after killing dogs, then Gibson certainly deserves another chance from America.

Despite pedestrian numbers at the box office relative to other films (it opened in 36th place with just 107,000k in sales) , it is foolish to say this movie is a flop.  The movie was only in 22 theatres nationwide and is being marketed as an arthouse film.

Thus far the film is getting decent and very good reviews particularly for Gibson's strong performance. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 62% rating, which is solid. And, should it gain some momentum, there is a very good chance this could put Gibson on the comeback trail.

Contact Dennis Bakay at dbakay@philly2philly.com

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