Prince Avalanche

 

Seen at the 2013 SXSW Film Festival.

With Prince Avalanche, David Gordon Green seems to have found a happy medium between the laid-back sincerity of his earlier work and the puerile stoner comedy he’s favored since plunging into the mainstream with Pineapple Express. This is a lovely buddy film, featuring the rather remarkable pairing of Paul Rudd and Emile Hirsch as road painters making their way through central Texas after the 1988 forest fires, each struggling with his own feelings of insecurity and loneliness. Rudd tweaks his brand of slightly bumbling physical comedy for the film just so (the little dance he does with the fishing rod when he thinks no one is watching is brilliant), and Hirsch adds some weight and an endearing, slightly dimwitted drawl. The film is very funny but nicely elegiac, too (the damage done by the fires lurks as a symbol for the things both Rudd and Hirsch have lost and can’t get back), and it’s just a pleasure to watch these two talented character actors do some genuinely distinctive work.

-- Eugene Novikov

Prince Avalanche
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