Entourage

Movie Information

The Story: A big-time Hollywood star — with his best friends at his side — struggles to get money together to finish his unwieldy directorial debut. The Lowdown: A crass, idiotic and pointlessly uninteresting male fantasy that feels every bit like its TV origins.
Score:

Genre: Comedy
Director: Doug Ellin (Kissing a Fool)
Starring: Adrian Grenier, Kevin Connolly, Kevin Dillon, Jerry Ferrara, Jeremy Piven
Rated: R

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I’ve never watched an episode of the HBO series Entourage and am only tangentially aware of its existence through some sort of pop culture osmosis. After sitting through series-creator Doug Ellin’s film adaptation (or, perhaps, continuation) of his TV series, I can’t see myself diving into the show anytime soon. It’s a boorish look into the world of Hollywood, a movie that wants to be a satire of the Hollywood movie machine, with its glut franchises and sequels, without ever realizing that its own existence is much of what’s wrong with modern studios. Why is so much money being spent on a TV show that’s been off the air for four years? Why is this movie nothing more than a parade of celebrity cameos (seriously, this is 75 percent of the film)? Why does anyone care about the escapades of this group of testosterone-fueled chuckleheads?

 

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The premise of the show — and thus the movie — follows A-list actor Vincent Chase (played by real life C-list actor Adrian Grenier) and his cadre of idiotic lifelong friends. We have his manager, Eric (Kevin Connolly), his half-brother and failed actor Drama (Kevin Dillon), and his driver-turned-vodka-magnate Turtle (Jerry Ferrara). Also thrown in here and there is Ari (Jeremy Piven), Vincent’s former agent-turned- (for reasons only the screenplay is truly aware of) studio head (of some studio conveniently never named). Ari’s first big decision is to turn over a $100 million passion project to Vincent, a movie that quickly goes over budget, but — we’re told — is some sort of masterpiece, even if the 30 seconds we see looks like warmed-over Wachowskis.

 

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The film is mostly Ari trying to get the money to finish the film from a couple of Texans (Billy Bob Thornton and Haley Joel Osment), while Vincent rides around with a supermodel and his schlubby friends discuss their nascent libidos. The idea is that Entourage is supposed to be a story of friends sticking together, but it’s incredibly phony. It’s incredibly easy to stick together when people are gifting you Cadillacs and you live in a mansion. While I have no doubt that people like this exist on this planet, I can’t imagine a solitary reason to want to spend time with a single one of them. They’re vapid men whose only concern is looking for sex and talking about sex. Constantly.

 

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Worse, the movie indulges in this. Entourage is as much a fantasy film as, say, Mad Max: Fury Road (though I think the argument could be made that Mad Max, right now, is more in tune with the world). Here, these simpering doofs get whatever they want — women, money, success — with a minimum of work. The idea, I suppose, is that Entourage wants to indulge in some sort of feel-good machismo, where everything works out and everyone’s happy. But there’s no drama, no tension, no humor and nary a character to care about or root for. The whole enterprise — this sort of beer commercial-turned-feature-length-film — is right on the cusp of being offensive, but that would mean taking it seriously. That it’s flopped at the box office is only a small justice. Rated R for pervasive language, strong sexual content, nudity and some drug use.

 

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26 thoughts on “Entourage

  1. T.rex

    I love movies about movie making (my favorite genre) but I think I’ll pass. Even the short commercials had too much sexism and chauvinism for me.

    • Ken Hanke

      Movies about moviemaking are almost invariably about making movies no one would sit through, and usually have no clue about making movies (see Singin’ in the Rain).

      • T.rex

        Was that a shot? I love Singin in the Rain, also The Player, Mistress, Bad and Beautiful, Open Season (that’s a slam on TV though, still a highly overlooked and barely seen movie), For Your Consideration.

        • Ken Hanke

          I hate to tell you, but I am not keen on a single movie in that list — even The Player, and I like Altman. Singin’ in the Rain is more overrated than GWTW, and completely misrepresents the early sound era in a sea of frenzy and “oh, weren’t they quaint back then?” humor. (See 1932’s Once in a Lifetime for a more accurate and funnier take on the era.) I admit I’ve never even heard of Mistress or Open Season. The less said about For Your Consideration the better, though it does seem to have put an end to Christopher Guest’s mockumentaries.

          How have you missed The Last Command (1927), A Star Is Born (1937) and Living in Oblivion (1995)? You should also consider Valentino (1977), Stand-In (1937), and The Stunt Man (1980).

          • Edwin Arnaudin

            I adore Christopher Guest films, but think For Your Consideration is pretty much a failure. No word on when he’ll return to movies, but he’s returned to form on TV with his Wizard of Oz focus group short for the 2012 Oscars (vimeo.com/37692299) and the superb HBO show Family Tree, which unfortunately appears to have been a one-and-done.

          • Edwin Arnaudin

            Ed Wood is probably my favorite movie about moviemaking. Also in the running (that have yet to be mentioned) are Boogie Nights, F for Fake, Adaptation, Bowfinger, Be Kind, Rewind, Barton Fink, Blow Out, Stardust Memories and the extended Méliès flashback in Hugo.

          • T.rex

            I love those movies and thanks for recommending ONCE IN A LIFETIME. I will definitely check it out.

          • T.rex

            Great list Edwin. ED WOOD is fantastic and the best Burton film.

          • Edwin Arnaudin

            Thanks! Ed Wood is my favorite Burton film, too.

          • T.rex

            What’s wrong with the PLAYER.? Love that film. It was my favorite Altman but I recently saw LONG KISS GOODNIGHT and that might dethrone it.

          • Me

            I go back and forth, I like In The Soup or Living in Oblivion, both 90’s Buscemi films. I still need to see My Life in Turnaround another film about making movies from the 90’s.

          • Edwin Arnaudin

            LONG KISS GOODNIGHT

            I guess someone’s got to like Renny Harlin.

          • Edwin Arnaudin

            Now why’d you have to go and spoil my fun?

          • mtndancer

            My Favorite Year is an absolute joy for the look at early TV. I Love the running gag with the girl in the cigarette box. But really it only hints at movies with the highlights from Alan Swan’s films.
            It may be cheating to chose a documentary but I would throw Lost in LaMancha into the mix.

          • T.rex

            Yes. I meant the Long Goodbye. Whooops. Too many movies in my brain.

  2. Me

    Liam Neeson couldn’t even bother to get out of the car for his cameo in this, am I right?

  3. Me

    Isn’t The Other Side of the Wind supposed to finally get released this year? Its supposed to be about the making of a movie right?

    • Ken Hanke

      Well, few — if any — of these movies are “about the making of a movie,” but rather they’re stories set against the background of making a film or films.

  4. Ken Hanke

    What’s wrong with the PLAYER.? Love that film. It was my favorite Altman

    It’s too full of itself. It’s too convinced of how cool it is and how “inside” Hollywood it is. I recognize its importance in reviving Altman’s career, but take out the opening shot and Whoopi Goldberg’s detective and you can have it. It’s way far down my list of Altmans. Hell, I’d rather watch H.E.A.L.T.H. (which I actually saw in a theater in NYC — a statement few can make).

  5. Bob Voorhees

    I read Justin Souther’s excellent review of this movie after I spent a few minutes wondering how to think about it. He nailed it with one phrase which was perfect: “extended beer commercial”.

  6. Me

    I have no desire to see this movie, but I did watch the Funny or Die live stream party of them watching every episode of the series.

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