If Laurel and Hardy, wearing matching baggy overalls and similarly dumbstruck expressions, had starred in a screen version of Waiting for Godot, the results wouldn't be far afield from Prince Avalanche. David Gordon Green's cheerfully goofy adaptation of a 2011 Icelandic movie called Either Way finds a couple of stumblebums - Alvin (Paul Rudd) and Lance (Emile Hirsch) - in the middle of the Texas woods, painting median strips along miles of empty road.
They work, they bicker, they camp. They talk about women - Alvin is in love with Lance's sister, writing long mash notes in his tent, while Lance thinks himself a lady's man, taking weekends off to hit the bars in town.
Now and then, an old coot in a truck rolls up, offering the boys liquor and pearls of wisdom.
Green, who has made films both nuanced (George Washington, All the Real Girls, Snow Angels) and THC-soaked and absurd (Pineapple Express, Your Highness), finds a balance somewhere in between with Prince Avalanche. Although the title is never explained, stuff tumbles down on its doofus duo. They feel like their youth, and their physiques, are getting away from them.