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Entourage Movie Review-True Bromance

ENTOURAGE

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Entourage Movie Review-True Bromance

A movie based on a successful TV show need only do one thing for itself to be successful. For entourage capturing the character of its leads and the city where they navigate stardom, notoriety, adulthood and brotherhood is key to satisfying this long-term fanbase and to making more worldwide fans who will watch the series and support its longevity in syndication.

As a movie Entourage operates like a cocky swaggering gambler, in town to win the big jackpot who is tipping the single mom serving his drinks with hundred dollar poker chips.  Entourage flamboyantly wears it’s heart on its sleeve,  and it’s this mix of heart and swagger that makes it so completely enjoyable.   To keep the fans happy as they watch this Hollywood fantasy about the boys from Queens, winning is and always has been a given.  It’s just a question of how much.

Show creator and writer/director Doug Ellin knows longtime fans of the show don’t come see this movie to watch one of them get cancer or any truly awful thing happened.  He knows they want Entourage the show, only made bigger and better for the big screen, all to watch great things happen to these boys–or Hollywood disasters happen to them and watch them work their way out of them—but together.  Is it or has it ever been the reality of living as a star and or friends of an A-lister in Hollywood?  Arguments abound about whether it is based on real events or sweetened for audience satisfaction.  Really, though, who cares?  

From the opening credits which beautifully reproduce some of the best LA landmarks, expanding on the opening sequence from the show, by using the most recognizable and storied signs and buildings to list the top billed actors and crew, we are reminded these boys represent the junction where old and new Hollywood converge.  Is it Jeremy Piven’s name rewritten on the sign for Chateau Mairmont? They all go by in such flashes of neon, it puts the audience right into the Hollywood heat ready for the city’s seduction.   

The movie picks up only nine days after the show’s last episode.  Movie star Vinnie Chase (Adrian Grenier) calls his pals to join him where he’s partying in Ibiza, after ending his ill-advised marriage days after the wedding.  They arrive and inform him Ari Gold (Jeremy Piven), who has taken the job of studio head after a momentary retirement, wants Vinnie to star in his first release, HYDE.  Vinnie says yes, but only if he gets to direct.  E his manager and bestie, (Kevin Connolly) his pal Turtle (Jerry Ferrara) and brother Drama (Kevin Dillon) then have to help him not only get more money Vince thinks he needs to finish the movie, they have to help him deal with the sociopathic creep Travis McCredle (Haley Joel Osment), son of billionaire studio backer Larsen (Billy Bob Thornton) who wants to cut Drama’s role completely out of Hyde, which may be his way out of his brother’s shadow, out the movie.  

Add a few subplots involving Mrs. Ari, Turtle’s newfound wealth and attempted suitorship of famed femme fighter Ronda Rousey, E’s X and baby momma Sloan, fan favorite Lloyd (Rex Lee) and his upcoming nuptials, house parties, a million star athlete and actor cameos, and a million breast and bum close-ups, and you have yourself the full gist of this tv-show based feature.  

It should actually be in the marketing… that this is by far the most ingénue and starlet ass you’ll see on the big screen in 2015. Somehow though they manage to shown off some of the best young bodies in Hollywood in skimpy bikinis while not alienating the female viewership.  While the dearth of, shall we say, fleshed out female roles is one of my only beefs with this new feature, gals who know the show, know what to expect.

Representation of women in Entourage the movie is as skimpy as the ubiquitous bikinis, but that’s not a huge stretch from the series.  Beyond the memorable featured role by Rousy, characters of the fairer sex are an afterthought.  In truth, building a romantic storyline with any weight would have sunk this buoyant bromance-focused flick.  The ever watchable Debi Mazar’s trash-talking publicist Shauna is the most disappointing in her limited screen presence.

All the featured players are in top character form, from jerk with a golden heart Ari, to newly rich and thin Turtle, to loveably narcissistic Drama.  Osment as the piss-ant billionaire brat is GREAT, and you can’t help but eat him up in his every second of screen time.  He takes his role as the spoiled officious Texan rich kid and runs with it.

People critical of the movie for its lack of individual character arcs or development are missing the point.  While fans of the show have come to love Vinnie, Drama, E, Turtle, and even Ari, it isn’t about any of them individually and never has been.  It’s about male friends unabashedly loving, supporting, and cheering each other on, calling each other on their nonsense, and staying loyal to each other.  If they take part in a little vapid silliness or irresponsibility along the way, we forgive them as they do each other.  We can all do with a little man on man sentimentality from Hollywood.

This is not wheel reinvention.  This is slick…fun..fantasy fulfillment. It teases just enough Hollywood decadence, shows enough of the destructive force to artistic creativity and vision represented by the mercurial moneyed power trippers, to remind norms we might not want the movie star life.  Oh but the parties….the ocean view.  

For being true to the spirit of HBO’s hit series and giving the fans some fun with the boys, I give this fluffy entertaining git-flick 4 1/2 out of 5 stars—As Drama would say….VICTORY!