[There was a video here]
Earlier this month, Matt Drudge stepped out of his link-dump comfort zone to deliver a breathless, exclusive scoop: Leonardo DiCaprio is raped by a bear in his new film The Revenant. The story spread so quickly that a spokesperson for 20th Century Fox had to tell Entertainment Weekly that “there is clearly no rape scene with a bear.”
Days later, both DiCaprio and the film’s director Alejandro Inarritu expressed their bafflement and exasperation at the bear-rape claim. On the red carpet of The Revenant’s Los Angeles premiere, DiCaprio called the story “absurd.” Inarritu said Drudge’s report was “hilarious, and pathetic in a way,” a rather pinpoint summation of Drudge’s general worldview.
Even before everyone connected with the film—and various critics—called bullshit on Drudge’s post, his interpretation of one of the film’s pivotal scenes seemed ridiculous on its face. In what scenario would DiCaprio’s character be raped by a bear? (Except, perhaps, for that elusive Oscar.) But now you can judge Drudge’s reading of the scene for yourself.
Above are the only two clips we could find in the nearly four-minute bear-attack sequence in The Revenant (which is in theaters on Christmas) that could even conceivably be perceived as rape. In both instances, DiCaprio is flipped onto his stomach by the bear, which then straddles him and tugs at his back, yanking him upwards sharply. The second clip ends with the bear standing over DiCaprio and panting heavily so, uh, hey, I dunno.
But in the context of the full scene, you would have to deeply stretch your mind to interpret those moments of the bear’s grappling with DiCaprio as animal-on-man sexual assault. For the remainder of the four or so minutes, the bear claws at and bites DiCaprio, his bones audibly crunching. It tosses and drags DiCaprio around wildly. At no point does it remove his pants.
Any reasonable person would recognize the scene as a mauling, the tactic popularly employed by bears everywhere, and that’s without even knowing that, in the full context of the film, the bear is a mother who is protecting her cubs.
Drudge, ever the recluse, has yet to comment on his story.