Quirky comedy film "Prince Avalanche" charms Berlin

Wed Feb 13, 2013 11:26am EST
 

By Mike Collett-White

BERLIN (Reuters) - Cinema has a new odd couple in "Prince Avalanche", a low-budget film set in the remote, fire-ravaged forests of Texas and starring Paul Rudd and Emile Hirsch as an unlikely pair of workers painting markings on a seemingly endless road.

The tedium of their work allows space for them to argue, bicker, compete and bond in David Gordon Green's oddball remake of a 2011 Icelandic movie called "Either Way".

In competition at the Berlin film festival, where it premieres on Wednesday, "Prince Avalanche" has received mostly warm reviews, with the Hollywood Reporter calling it an "odd little gem of a movie".

Green, best known for stoner comedy "Pineapple Express", took an unusual approach to making the film: he decided to adapt an Icelandic picture even before he had seen it.

"I watched the film for the first time really with the intension of remaking it, which is really strange," he told reporters in Berlin.

He set the action in the late 1980s rather than today, because it allowed him to cut his characters off completely from an outside world with no Skype, mobile phones or iPads - generally a time when "things were more pleasant."

LOVE-HATE RELATIONSHIP WITH NATURE

For Hirsch, there were parallels with his most famous role to date in Sean Penn's 2007 "Into the Wild" in which he plays Christopher McCandless, who turns his back on society and wanders into the Alaskan wilderness.   Continued...

 
Director David Gordon Green (C), and actors Paul Rudd (L) and Emile Hirsch pose during a photocall to promote the movie "Prince Avalanche" at the 63rd Berlinale International Film Festival in Berlin February 13, 2013. REUTERS/Tobias Schwarz