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The Beaver (2011)

PG-13  |   |  Drama  |  19 May 2011 (Germany)
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 38,016 users   Metascore: 60/100
Reviews: 147 user | 271 critic | 40 from Metacritic.com

A troubled husband and executive adopts a beaver hand-puppet as his sole means of communicating.



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1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Vice President
Volunteer Dad
Skeptical Man
Norah's Mom
Elizabeth Kaledin ...


Walter Black ('Mel Gibson') is depressed and sleeps most of the day. It's driving his family crazy, and his wife Meredith (Jodie Foster) kicks him out. Walter starts carrying a beaver puppet and tries to commit suicide (unsuccessfully). He uses the puppet to talk to himself, trying to bolster his spirits, and is trying to rebuild his life. Through the beaver, the family begins to learn about Walter's history and problems, and as he continues rebuilding, the beaver shows us all a way to cope. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


He's here to save Walter's life.



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, some disturbing content, sexuality and language including a drug reference | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




Release Date:

19 May 2011 (Germany)  »

Also Known As:

Le complexe du castor  »

Box Office


$21,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$107,577 (USA) (6 May 2011)


$958,319 (USA) (24 June 2011)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Jodie Foster's first film as director shot in 2.35. See more »


[first lines]
Walter Black: This is a picture of Walter Black, a hopelessly depressed individual. Somewhere inside him is a man who fell in love. Who started a family. Who ran a successful company. That man has gone missing. No matter what he's tried, and he's tried everything, Walter can't seem to bring him back. It's as if he's died, but hasn't had the good sense to take his body with him. So mostly what he does is sleep.
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Featured in The Hour: Episode #7.136 (2011) See more »


Exit Music (for a Film)
Written by Thom Yorke (as Thomas Edward Yorke), Jonny Greenwood (as Jonathan Richard Guy Greenwood), Ed O'Brien (as Edward John O'Brien), Colin Greenwood (as Colin Charles Greenwood) and Phil Selway (as Phillip James Selway)
Performed by Radiohead
Courtesy of EMI Records Ltd.
Under license from EMI Film and Television Music
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User Reviews

Broken Man Facing His Demons Works for Gibson
18 March 2011 | by (Austin, TX) – See all my reviews

Although it's difficult to watch Mel Gibson now without the backdrop of alcoholism, abuse, bigotry, rants and disappointment, this role may actually be the perfect role for him to re-appear on the screen with sympathy and hope of redemption. He plays this role perfectly and the viewer is sucked into the emotion and distress of all characters dealing with their own challenges. It's a beautiful movie with a powerful message. Some have criticized Jodie Foster's directing, but I found the film to be very balanced with the right amount of comedy and tragedy. I loved the camera work and editing, especially with the Beaver as its own character. I also liked the secondary storyline about the teenagers. All the performances were very good. I think the entire movie is very well done, and although I have not changed my personal opinion of Mel Gibson at all, the movie does make you very sympathetic towards families dealing with crisis including his own, and as an actor, he pulls off a very difficult role.

128 of 164 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Just sthu all you Gibson haters serenity159
'It's big in Sweden' deathrattle
Gibson is brilliant thepillsr-1
Mel's beaver impression sounds like... chivers677
Anyone else get an American Beauty vibe from this??? johnnyhightest
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