|PRINCE AVALANCHE (director/writer: David Gordon Green; screenwriter: story by Hafsteinn Gunnar Siguršsson; cinematographer: Tim Orr; editor: Colin Patton; music: Explosions in the Sky/David Wingo; cast: Paul Rudd (Alvin), Emile Hirsch (Lance), Lance LeGault (Truck Driver), Joyce Payne (Lady), Gina Grande (Madison), Lynne Shelton (Voice of Madison); Runtime: 83; MPAA Rating: R; producers: James Belfer/Lisa Muskat/Craig Zobel/Derrick Tseng/ David Gordon Green; Magnolia Pictures; 2013)|
by Dennis Schwartz
quirky dramedy is adapted from the 2011
Either Way, an Icelandic film by Hafsteinn Gunnar
Siguršsson. The 38-year-old filmmaker
David Gordon Green ("George Washington"/"All
The Real Girls"/"Pineapple Express") returns to his
indie roots, after failing more or less artistically
with a few mainstream raunchy comedies, with this
weird charmer that's so wonderfully goofy it ruefully
hides its observant serious look at the emotional and
financial problems Americans face while trying to
recover from their ruined lives. The two bickering
friendly protagonist, the twenty-something sassy city
boy Lance (Emile Hirsch) and the more
rigid buffoon-like know-it-all older road crew boss
Alvin (Paul Rudd), fancying himself as
an outdoorsman, work painting yellow lines on the
desolate highway, somewhere in central Texas, in 1988,
one year after a devastating fire, with an
undetermined cause, damaged a great part of the forest
and made it uninhabitable.
seem like eccentric characters out of a Samuel
Beckett play, forging an unlikely friendship, who
found a home in this thoughtful and amusing parable,
as Green strikes a fine balance between being funny,
meditative and, at odd times, surreal.
Perhaps the funniest and most meaningful bit is when either man is upset and the other always wants to talk about it, but the one affected calls him off by saying Can we just enjoy the silence? This aside amusingly becomes the film's recurring tag line.
REVIEWED ON 11/14/2013 GRADE: B +
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
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