Picking up where the popular television series left off, Entourage, takes us back to director Doug Ellin’s vision of Los Angeles. Bringing back the principle crew and every significant character over the course of the show’s run makes the movie feel familiar. Doug Ellin was able to recapture the magic of series that had been lost in the latter seasons. The story surrounds Ari Gold (Jeremy Piven) as a new film studio head who is bankrolling Vincent Chase's (Adrian Grenier) next movie, which Vincent demands to direct. Coming on to produce the film is Eric Murphy (Kevin Connolly). No crew would be complete without Turtle (Jerry Ferrara), and last but certainly not least Johnny ‘Drama’ Chase (Kevin Dillon). After giving Vince a $100 million budget the movie isn’t finished and more money is needed. Ari hasn’t seen the film and is leery that it might be terrible since Vince is holding the film from him. Ari is then forced to go to Texas and meet with a studio financier, Larsen McCredle (Billy Bob Thorton), to ask for more money. Larsen agrees to the advance but only if his son Travis (Haley Joel Osment) can travel to L.A. and approve the film first. Shenanigans ensue and the film is put on hiatus and their is a race to get the film completed in the nick of time.
If all this sounds like a classic Entourage type of situation you would be correct. What the film never tries to do is be something else. One of the biggest faults (and their were many) of HBO’s attempt at a similar Sex and the City 2 movie was taking the crew out of its element. Here, Ellin knows L.A. is at the very heart of the success of the series and stays true to that. Never getting particularly complicated or moving too far out of the box.
The film’s tagline is “the ride ain’t over,” but sadly that’s not true. The film truly works to make the best version of the show and concludes it nicely. It makes you want to go back and start at the beginning. Plenty of studios (including HBO) can learn a lot from Entourage and Doug Ellin. If you are going to do a film after a television series, just amp the stakes and keep the core of what got you there. Each of the principle characters get a well crafted story arc and benefit from the previous eight seasons that help to fill in the blanks. In a way, Doug Ellin had an easy job, just make a really great episode of the show and you hit a home run with the fans, and he did just that. Entourage is no Oscar worthy film or even a summer blockbuster, but in the end it’s good dumb escapist fun, and that’s what we came to see from Vinnie and the boys.
[easyreview title= "Review of Entourage" cat1title="Jay's Rating" cat1detail="Overall Review" cat1rating="3.5" overall= false]