Either Way

Either Way

***

Reviewed by: Scott Macdonald

Finnboeg and Alfred are two members of a loose family (Finnboeg's girlfriend is Alfred's sister), and they're off to work for the summer, painting the lines on an unspecified road somewhere in "1980something" Iceland. Alfred is 23 years old and perpetually horny. Finnboeg is older and far more hardworking and conservative in his outlook on life.

Either Way is essentially a two-and-a-bit character play - with an occasional addition. A grateful truck driver pops in from time to time. He dispenses unruly wisdom ("Two handsome young men and no pussy?") and far more importantly his own "triple distilled poison" moonshine. Finboeg and Alfred are in the middle of nowhere and their work is interspersed with occasional (unseen) trips to a nearby city.

They've got lots of time to do nothing of note: fishing, doing puzzles, writing letters to loved ones back home. In this remarkably simple setting, writer/director Haffstein Gunnar Sigurosson conjures a reasonable selection of exploits for the bored workers, and events for them to contemplate and fight about. "Can't we just enjoy the silence for once?" becomes a running joke, when either one of the pair wants some peace and quiet. It doesn't last.

It's a gentle, enjoyable little drama - a very comfortable and concise 80 minutes. Sigurosson places the glorious Icelandic scenery front and centre. Our time is spent with solid actors portraying interesting people. Not much more I need ask for.

Reviewed on: 20 Jun 2012
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Finnboeg and Alfred paint lines on a road in this gentle comedy. Re-released to coincide with David Gordon Green's remake Prince Avalanche.
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Director: Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurðsson

Writer: Sveinn Ólafur Gunnarsson, Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurðsson

Starring: Hilmar Guðjónsson, Sveinn Ólafur Gunnarsson

Year: 2011

Runtime: 84 minutes


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Prince Avalanche