Christ alive, where to start.
Armando Ianucci, the unparalleled king of comedy writing as far as this reviewer is concerned, once spoke about the challenges of bringing Alan Partridge to the big screen. “With a TV series you have to make sure that the characters arrive back at the same point every week as when they started. Movies are more final so you have to take them to somewhere new, out of their comfort zone”. That’s exemplified perfectly in his filmic iterations of Alan Partridge (Alpha Papa) and The Thick Of It (In The Loop).
Entourage is different. Those who remember the show may recall Vinny Chase graduating from 8 seasons of A-list promiscuity to finally settle down and marry an absolute scorcher. Good on him. He matured!
At the start of the movie, we meet our hero Vinny, 9 days on from that fateful final episode. He’s on a boat, he’s surrounded by swimsuit models and he’s divorced. And so our storyteller Doug Ellin undoes the very essence of character development to make a long and over-wrought episode of a show we’d all grown tired of. The plot, same as ever, except Vinny wants to direct his next movie.
Absolute shame on you for expecting anything else. The core dynamic of the show remains perfectly intact. Johnny Drama provides the laughs (his arc is actually the most compelling part of the movie), Ari Gold provides the performance chops, Vinny provides the excuse to see naked ladies and E and Turtle provide the story filler. Ellin’s one-note writing and leery direction shows no evolution from the shortcomings that made Entourage so boring so long ago. It’s Transformers without transformations.
The predictable and stretched story is peppered with countless, exhaustive celebrity cameos, including the kid from The Sixth Sense playing a Southern, overweight version of himself. Some are hilarious (Liam Neeson, Kelsey Grammar) and some are pointless pay-cheque exercises (the rest).
This is garbage, bottom of the barrel, pseudo-aspirational filth of the lowest order. But I have more fondness for the show that spawned it than I have journalistic integrity. So I admit to liking it. It’s vacuous, consumerist message of inspiration sent me from the theatre with the longing to better myself, that was mere hours ago at the time of writing. I’m now on my fifth Tuborg.
But let me say this.
It’s important for the progression of our species that as few people as possible see this film, because you may enjoy it too.
Written by Shane Hennessy