ENTOURAGE: THE MOVIE
Review by Gordon Justesen
Stars: Kevin Connolly, Adrain
Grenier, Kevin Dillon, Jerry Ferrara, Jeremy Piven
Director: Doug Ellin
Audio: DTS HD 5.1
Video: Anamorphic Widescreen 2.40:1
Studio: Warner Bros.
Features: See Review
Length: 104 Minutes
Release Date: September 29, 2015
“We can’t finish the movie without money.”
“Really? Because I thought we could finish it with Fruit Loops.”
For eight extremely energetic and hilarious seasons, the HBO series Entourage delivered both a fun filled romp and a slicing and dicing of the Hollywood scene. Loosely based on experiences of series producer Mark Wahlberg, the show followed four guys from Queens; one a major movie star and the other three his best friends/employees. This of course would translate to the title of the show.
Four years after the show ended, series creator Doug Ellin has resurfaced his television creation in the form of a feature length movie, and rightfully so. It would only make sense to do this since Sex and the City was the only other HBO series to get a feature film continuation, and Entourage has been labeled as “Sex and the City for guys”. It should also be mentioned that Ellin had be hinting at a movie ever since the show’s final season.
Movie star Vincent Chase (Adrian Grenier) is in need of a big project. As it turns out, Vince’s former agent, Ari Gold (Jeremy Piven), wants him to headline Ari’s first feature as studio head. But Vince has one slight demand, which is that he also wants to direct, which he’s never done before.
Several months later and the production, titled “Hyde”, is already way over budget. And as it turns out, Vince needs more money. This puts just about everyone in Hollywood on edge, especially Ari who finds himself having to deal with the financer of the movie, Texas billionaire Larsen McCredie (Billy Bob Thornton), who in turn sends his son, Travis (Haley Joel Osment), to oversee the finalizing of the production.
Vince’s entourage, meanwhile, are experiencing their own dilemmas. Eric (Kevin Connolly) is on the verge of having a baby with ex-girlfriend Sloan (Emmanuelle Chriqui). Turtle (Jerry Ferrara) is trying his absolute best to land a date with UFC fighter Ronda Rousey, which is about as difficult as it sounds. And Vince’s brother, Johnny Drama (Kevin Dillon), who’s struggled for a comeback for most of his career, faces the possibility of having his small part in the new movie cut, simply because Travis doesn’t like him.
There’s no question that the movie works as none other than fan service, but since I happen to be a die-hard fan of the show that’s not a problem. Spending time with these characters for one more ride is all that I could ever ask for in an Entourage movie, especially when it comes to that of Ari Gold, who remains one of the funniest characters to ever emerge from television. Thankfully, Jeremy Piven is given multiple moments to shine as Ari has to deal with everything from work stress to unwanted therapy sessions with his wife to being asked to give away his former gay assistant at his wedding.
As for those who are going into this movie having never seen the series, I think it can still be enjoyed. The movie kicks off a funny profiling of the characters by Piers Morgan so that those new to this world can get a good understanding of what they’re getting into. And the movie does conclude on a truly good note, not to mention a very fitting bookend to those familiar with how the first episode began.
Not to mention, as in true Entourage fashion, we get cameos galore, with Jessica Alba, Liam Neeson, Kelsey Grammer, Armie Hammer, Russell Wilson, Pharell Williams, Jon Favreau and Mark Wahlberg just to name a few.
What’s more, “Hyde” is the one movie from the Entourage universe that I would personally love to really see get made!
Entourage carries the biting energy and hilarity from the small screen to the big screen flawlessly, and has definitely satisfied a longtime fan with the transition!
Warner has delivered yet another stunning Blu-ray handling with this release. The Hollywood setting is indeed eye catching from the very beginning, with a strikingly detailed image and glorious colors, which show off most terrifically! The one glimpse we get at the movie within the movie provides the presentations big highlight!
The DTS HD mix serves as a great balance among dialogue delivery and energetic music use, which was always a trademark of the series (it’s always great to hear Jane’s Addiction’s theme song). Again, the sequence of the movie within the movie provides some nice added boom to the proceedings. One strong piece of lossless audio!
We get several featurettes including “The Gang: Still Rockin’ It”, which takes a look at the cast re-familiarizing themselves with the characters. There’s also “Hollywood, Baby!”, which looks at Hollywood being a character in and of itself in the Entourage world, as well as “The Making of Hyde”, which takes a look at what went into the making of the movie within the movie. Rounding out the extras are Deleted Scenes, a Gag Reel and two brief featurettes, “Meet the Newest Member of Entourage” and “Lucas Ellin is Jonah Gold”, which feature interviews with director Doug Ellin’s son.
Entourage makes a worthy extension into feature film format, and continues the hilarious and dynamically entertaining aspects that made the show the dynamite series that it was. A pure must see for fans!