PRINCE AVALANCHE: A Film About the Beauty of Human Chaos


Humans are flawed, egocentric, and uniquely insecure, and somewhat there’s something appealing about that. There can be beauty in chaos. Or at least that’s what director David Gordon Green is channeling in his latest feature Prince Avalanche. And through heartwarming performances by Emile Hirsch and Paul Rudd, his intimate vision of life makes sense, and ultimately works.

Flowing once more effortlessly between comedy and drama, Gordon Green (Pineapple Express) loves to deal with situations of let-me-find-myself-by-loosing-myself. And this time is not by running around with drug dealers, but by placing his main characters in a desolated location, where there’s nothing else to do but talk to each other. And, even if its seems like a daunting task, this script manages to move things along just leaning on dialogue, and from frame one we can’t let go.

The acting is superb, Hirsch has proved before he can be a lovable/believable rebel with (or without) a cause (Lords of Dogtown, Into the Wild), and I found his performance to be riveting, and the perfect counterpart to Paul Rudd’s shyest Lance. I love to see (Rudd) once more contributing to out of the box projects that completely pay off and show the length of his range as an actor. Very few movies take the risk of relying entirely in dialogue (and ever fewer directors can manage to do so successfully) but this film is as sweet and self constrained as it can be hilarious, daring and charming. Even when dealing with heavy dialogue, both the actors and a very smart script find humor and novelty even in the grimmest of situations.

The cinematography serves an useful purpose: is not pretentious or overwhelming, but a beautiful muted canvas that showcases the main characters emotional issues. They aren’t perfect, neither are the conditions of their surroundings. Cold weather, isolation, is nature portrayed as stunning as sometimes menacing, as if reflecting the protagonists inner conflicts.

There are very few efforts truly sincere about the conundrum of people’s nature, about how our flaws and fears can connects us more than tearing us apart. We all face lost at some point of our lives: of a loved one, of a sense of confidence, of hope, or even each others as human beings. But even as if that’s what makes us individuals, somehow that’s also what brings us together: only through chaos we discover and find others, and ultimately, ourselves.