The HBO comedy series returns in glorious style with Jeremy Piven’s Ari Gold leading the way

The boys from Entourage are back for one final ride into the Hollywood sunset as they make the leap to the big screen. Series creator Doug Ellin writes and directs this feature-length movie for the popular HBO comedy series. Everyone is back in the saddle, including Jeremy Piven as Ari Gold. Vince, Eric, Turtle, and Johnny Drama return to once again navigate the cutthroat world of Hollywood in their inimitable style. Victory!

This movie is probably not for neophytes to the show but for fans that stuck around for some of Entourage’s eight seasons. Expect huge celebrity cameos acting as themselves, exotic cars, and even more beautiful women than what we’ve come to accept from the familiar Entourage formula. It is a light, goofy comedy about living the good life of an A-list star in L.A. with fame and fortune.

The Emmy-winning HBO series was always about fans vicariously living the life of a young, male Hollywood superstar from a comic perspective. Originally based on actor Mark Wahlberg’s life, it followed the rise of young Vincent Chase (Adrian Grenier) as he became a major Hollywood star. Along for the ride he brought his three childhood friends as a personal entourage to shield himself from the sharks that infest Hollywood. Included were Eric “E” Murphy, his business manager and best friend, Johnny “Drama” Chase, Vince’s older half-brother and failed actor, and Turtle, a hustling maverick always trying to make something happen.

Everyone imagines the crazy Hollywood parties, the high-stakes movie business, the cutthroat business deals, and most importantly, the multitudes of hot actresses and models willing to throw themselves at a movie star. This is the life of Vincent Chase and he’s brought his friends along to enjoy the ride. Along the way they get into comedic situations that could only happen in Hollywood.

Entourage wouldn’t be complete without the return of super-agent Ari Gold. Having retired to Europe at the end of season eight, Ari returns in Entourage: The Movie as the head of a studio. It’s a perfect scenario for the show’s funniest character. Jeremy Piven crafted one of television’s most memorable characters as the Hollywood agent with major anger issues. His comedic performance was the backbone of Entourage’s humor and turned a flashy show about Hollywood’s excesses into truly a comedic tour de force.

The movie almost immediately clears the deck to keep the story as close to the classic Entourage formula as possible. Ari has become a studio head and he has to deal with Vince wanting to direct a mega-blockbuster named “Hyde.” Hyde is to be Vince’s Braveheart or Dances With Wolves after his marriage is quickly dissolved and his last movie has bombed. Along the way Turtle flirts with UFC Women’s Champion Ronda Rousey and Eric has to deal with a mess of girlfriend issues, including his pregnant ex-girlfriend Sloan. Drama becomes infamous when a sex video of him leaks all over town. Possibly the only annoying story-line is a recurring joke between Ari and his former assistant Lloyd about his impending marriage that is totally run into the ground.

The movie amps that up to a ridiculous level with even more sex and nudity than a regular Entourage episode.

The movie does everything possible to make Entourage bigger and better than ever. Random celebrities from Jessica Alba to Tom Brady make cameos as themselves. It is a star-studded affair loaded with current stars I won’t spoil. Entourage has never been shy about showing Vince and his friends enjoying the female benefits of their Hollywood lifestyle. The movie amps that up to a ridiculous level with even more sex and nudity than a regular Entourage episode. A bevy of beautiful women throw themselves at the guys, often leading to hilarious situations.

The central plot revolves around an ornery Texas businessman played by Billy Bob Thornton. He is financing Vince’s over-budget movie and sends his son to check out how his money has been spent. That conflict drives the plot as the son doesn’t like the movie and unsurprisingly wants to change it himself. It is not an original idea but works well enough, never getting in the way of Entourage’s returning characters. Entourage’s formula has never been rocket science but all the things we’ve come to expect from it are bigger than ever in this movie.

It is not a great idea to see Entourage: The Movie if you have no experience with the HBO series. This is a movie for its many fans, serving up one last ride for the guys in a funny, crowd-pleasing two hours.

Movie ★★★★☆

The crew @ 7:36

Entourage has always looked a little different than other television programs. The show began on 16mm and was practically shot guerrilla style in the early seasons. This movie bumps that up to a somewhat cleaner Super 35 format with the occasional digital camera for assistance. Some of the presentation looks quite good, especially at the big party and a nice opening scene on the water at Ibiza. It’s a colorful palette with decent definition. Actual detail wavers while remaining razor-sharp. Some minor video processing has likely been attempted to even out the film’s appearance.

WB provides a rock-solid AVC video encode for the 104-minute main feature. It averages 26.89 Mbps in a perfectly transparent presentation replicating the 2K digital intermediate. A touch of sharpening is evident for the first quarter of the movie. The digital color-grading does show a tendency towards the hated teal-and-orange scheme, particularly in the over-done flesh-tones.

Entourage: The Movie occasionally takes impressive advantage of its 2.4:1 scope aspect ratio with dazzling panoramic shots. This is not the most consistent or steady Hi-Def video. Cinematography moves from gorgeous to flat fairly quickly. The sharp picture has some depth in its better close-ups, showing off impressive fine detail. The show was never a reliable provider of eye candy but the movie does a decent job of making Entourage bolder visually. This is not picture-perfect cinematography with incredible delineation, but certainly pops with improved clarity.

Video ★★★★☆

Entourage has always used Rap and other high-energy club music for its soundtrack. Mobb Deep and Snoop Dogg are but two of the acts that fill this thumping soundtrack. This 5.1 DTS-HD MA presentation is an excellent surround mix filled with a number of classic Rap tunes from the 90s and sooner. The dialogue is intelligibly placed with full clarity in a dynamic mix with great range. Music fills the soundstage much of the time, even when characters are talking. The sound design adds immersive surround elements and a wide array of sonic cues.

Subtitles include English SDH, French, Spanish and Portuguese. They display in a white font outside the scope presentation. Alternate dubs include English descriptive audio, Spanish, Portuguese and French in 5.1 Dolby Digital.

Audio ★★★★☆

Entourage: The Movie gets a nice little retrospective with chat from the main cast looking back over the entire series. WB’s combo pack includes a DVD version and an UltraViolet digital copy which redeems in HDX on your preferred UV provider. An ordinary slipcover is available on first pressings.

The Making of Hyde (04:34 in HD) – Go behind the scenes with Vincent Chase, the director of Hyde. This is a great featurette done completely in-character by everyone. The spoof works so well because they interview actual crew members that helped shoot the Hyde scene, a futuristic teen movie. This was done with humor mocking the typical behind-the-scenes tone and is a lot of fun.

The Gang – Still Rockin’ It (14:15 in HD) – Director Doug Ellin and the five main cast members of Entourage sit down in a group chat. They reminisce about the show and how they all got to this point. It’s a lively, informative discussion with a relaxed cast. Definitely an essential bonus feature to see for fans.

Hollywood, Baby! (08:28 in HD) – The cast and Doug Ellin are interviewed about the show’s glamorous L.A. culture, from hot cars to the fancy parties.

Meet the Newest Member of Entourage (02:16 in HD) – A brief featurette highlighting the very young kid that plays a small role.

Lucas Ellin is Jonah Gold (01:59 in HD) – Ellin’s young son is interviewed about his day filming as Ari’s son.

Deleted Scenes (18:39 in HD) – Apparently some celebrities were cut from the final edit. This has several scenes that made it in very abbreviated fashion into the movie.

Gag Reel (02:46 in HD)

Extras ★★★☆☆

Full disclosure: This Blu-ray was provided to us for review. This has not affected the editorial process. For information on how we handle review material, please visit our about us page to learn more.


Click on the images below for full resolution screen captures taken directly from the Blu-ray. Images have not been altered in any way during the process.

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