I apprehensively went to see Entourage, thinking I was going to suffer through a story build-up to a teaser ending. I fully expected some sort of gritty, emotionally tangled world with hints of darkness sprinkled throughout, with the obvious ambiguous lead-ups to a second (or third, or fourth, ad nauseam) sequel.
I was wrong. Entourage is the movie every fan of the series should see, and it wraps up in a way the television series should have ended. It is an over-the-top, male Sex in the City party extravaganza… and it is awesome!
The movie blends in the best parts of the final season. It maintains plot points and quickly loses some of the television show’s extra baggage. The characters haven’t grown or changed, and some of the repetitive plotlines from the television series are apparent. Everything really isn’t bigger, and the stakes aren’t higher, but it feels okay. In fact, somewhat welcome. This is because these are the characters we want to see and how we want to see them.
Ari (played by Jeremy Piven) was my favorite character in the television series. Even in the worst episodes, he seemed to steal every scene, and he does not miss a beat in the movie. I was worried we would not have enough Ari, but we do (although I wish there was more Lloyd). Speaking of strong performances…Kevin Dillon (Johnny “Drama” Chase) comes in a close second to Jeremy Piven’s performance, and I think he literally steals the show within the context of the movie. I have always been a television series Johnny Drama fan, and this movie gives some of the best Drama moments to date.
The Entourage movie takes the best parts of a great television run and compresses them into a movie. The pace of the story feels right, and there is a hilarious onslaught of cameos that almost breaks a barrier in terms of a director not taking things too seriously. There are also fast cars and beautiful women to make sure every teenager's fantasy gets fulfilled.
The acting streams well, and as you watch the movie it feels like the cast genuinely enjoyed their time together. There aren’t any earth-shattering moments, and the depth of the plot is limited. Even the primary antagonist's motivations can be seen coming from a mile away. But it simply worked for me.
If you loved the series, you will love the movie. Don’t expect any new revelations, but expect to be satisfied where the story, and ultimately the characters, end up. If you didn’t like parts of the series, such as how the show goes over the top to fulfill fantasies, this movie may not be for you. The same could be said if you have a strong intellectual view of how Hollywood should make movies.
My opinion? This movie is not only made for fans. It feels like it was made by fans.