Prince – A revenge fueled coming of age story
Written and directed by: Sam de Jong
Ayoub (Elasri) is a young man of 17 who spends his time hanging out with his mischievous friends blowing up mail boxes, trying to get the attention of the neighborhood hotty (Sigrid ten Napel), and checking on his street-living, junkie father. His home life, with his mother (de Brauw) and sister (Lonsdale) is loving but volatile. He is what you might label as disaffected youth.
When his friends joke about him being the pathetic son of a junkie, and his crush sicks her gangster boyfriend on him, he decides enough is enough. To give them all their just desserts, he goes down a dangerous path of running errands for a local drug dealer and thug (Freddy Tratlehner). It seems like an all to familiar tale of a poor kid getting mixed up with the wrong people, and leading a violent (and short) life but first time director Sam de Jong has a different idea for his tough luck, goodhearted character with misplaced emotions.
De Jong’s film is quirky, unique, and wildly entertaining in a way that separates it from most other coming of age movies. The choice to blend subject matter that is dark and even bleak at times with a synth-pop soundtrack and some truly captivating visuals is a home run. “Prince” is certainly one of the more original, off the wall films I have seen this year, and I mean that as a compliment. My only complaint would be that the films ending doesn’t feel dark enough. De Jong opts for a tidy, somewhat cliche tie up to what is otherwise a fun, entertaining film that has me excited to see what the young filmmaker does next!