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I pray that in this Year of Mercy, Mel Gibson has put all those demonic faces behind him, so that nothing impedes his gaze as it seeks the face of the risen Lord.First up is "Blood Father," a violent, low-key drama opening in limited release August 12.Fortunately, Gibson has shown that he can portray women with dignity: some of the best scenes in The Passion revolve around Our Lady and St Mary Magdalene.But can he portray the unique effect of a God who conquers sin and death through non-violent means? So I hope that, in spite of his darker obsessions, Gibson makes a Resurrection movie that’s as good in its own way as this year’s Risen.Gibson is currently embarked on a press junket for his new movie Hacksaw Ridge, which is how he came to be on the Colbert show.Based on the true story of Desmond Doss, the first conscientious objector to win the Medal of Honor for non-combatant service during the Second World War, the film seems likely to rank among his best work to date. While he eventually cut 10 minutes of flagellation from The Passion of the Christ, it can’t have been easy to persuade him. “It’s a pity that one has to be defined with a label,” Gibson told Colbert, “from, you know, having a nervous breakdown in the back of a police car from a bunch of double tequilas, but that’s what it is. that moment shouldn’t define the rest of my life.” Colbert asked Gibson if he had learned anything from his time in politically incorrect hell.
“You know, 10 years go by, I worked a lot on myself, I’m actually happier and healthier than I’ve been in a long time. Will they all be played by women, as the Devil was in The Passion?
Considerable debate ensued over a 2014 Deadline column that urged Hollywood to "give the guy another chance." Gibson presented at the Golden Globe awards in January, where host Ricky Gervais awkwardly needled him about his well-documented past.
Slim on story and violent, "Blood Father" feels like a comedown from the actor's heyday, and at best a minor test of his current bankability as a star.
The more telling question will be how "Hacksaw Ridge" is received, with its November opening suggesting that the studio releasing it, Lionsgate, sees potential for awards prestige.
Against that backdrop, it's easy to hear minor echoes of Gibson's personal struggles in "Blood Father," when his character says wistfully, "I can't fix everything I broke." At his peak, Gibson was one of the world's biggest movie stars.