A flat, frat boy pa­rade that fails to im­press

CityPress - - Trending - Binwe.ade­bayo@city­press.co.za Di­rec­tor: Doug Ellin Star­ring: Adrian Gre­nier, Ha­ley Joel Os­ment

We’ve all had that mo­ment in a cof­fee shop. You or­der a cap­puc­cino and ex­pect a hot, strong, frothy cup – but in­stead it’s cold, flat and has too much milk. That’s pretty much the level of dis­ap­point­ment I ex­pe­ri­enced with the En­tourage film.

This isn’t just be­cause it’s an unin­spir­ing, me­an­der­ing nar­ra­tive with no real sense of char­ac­ter, but be­cause the di­a­logue is weak and the act­ing even weaker.

The story is a fea­ture-film con­tin­u­a­tion of the wildly pop­u­lar TV se­ries of the same name. Ad­mit­tedly, I was a bit of a fan of the orig­i­nal En­tourage se­ries – af­ter all, the story of four young Hol­ly­wood frat boys liv­ing large in LA is per­fect view­ing for an empty Satur­day af­ter­noon. But to sit for two hours in a cin­ema watch­ing this drivel un­in­ter­rupted is just too much.

In the film the boys, led by their gor­geous leader, Vin­cent Chase (Adrian Gre­nier), are em­bark­ing on a mas­sively ex­pen­sive movie with the back­ing of their semire­tired boss and men­tor, Ari Gold ( Jeremy Piven), and get them­selves in trou­ble when they come up against a bumbling Texan (Ha­ley Joel Os­ment), who seeks to undo their “hard work”. But more than this so-called plot, the story is about pre­sent­ing, with­out any cri­tique, the lives of the It boys of Hol­ly­wood.

Women are ex­pend­able play­things or, in Johnny Chase’s (Kevin Dil­lon) words, “pieces of p**sy” to be used to re­lieve the stress and inse­cu­ri­ties of these im­ma­ture, largely tal­ent­less in­di­vid­u­als.

Part of the fail­ure to wow comes from the fact that the film is al­most en­tirely in­ward­fac­ing. Draw­ing on LA-based jokes, with an LA-fo­cused pic­ture of re­al­ity, what is al­ready a film based on ex­clu­siv­ity is al­most alien­at­ing to a viewer.

Like many of the songs fea­tured in the film (ad­mit­tedly it’s a solid sound­track), the “pop­ping bot­tles” nar­ra­tive ei­ther in­vokes an at­ti­tude of long­ing in the viewer, or just makes them feel like it’s fly­ing right past them be­cause of the bub­ble in which ev­ery­thing takes place.

Be­sides this so­cial level, there are some re­ally un­re­al­is­tic out­comes that pull apart its cred­i­bil­ity. The un­der­dog comes out on top, the most use­less char­ac­ters are given a free pass by their part­ners and, de­spite a se­ries of fi­nan­cially du­bi­ous blun­ders, the boys still suc­ceed.

This is bor­der­line fan­tasy, and not even the good kind.

TRANS­FORM­ERS: AGE OF EX­TINC­TION

THIS RIDE IS OVER En­tourage’s unin­spir­ing, me­an­der­ing nar­ra­tive has no real sense of char­ac­ter and is made worse by a weak script and even weaker act­ing

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