I wasn’t exactly a student of the HBO series “Entourage,” which ended its eight-year run four years ago, so I come to its movie incarnation, which picks up about a week after the end of the series, with relatively fresh eyes. Fresher eyes, perhaps, than its perpetrators, who haul out a boatload (yacht load?) of clichés about life in the fast La-La lane.
The clichés are, I suppose, the point. People are slavering for this film because of the clichés: the bikinis and palm trees and glitzy mansions and all the backstabby Hollywood behavior that comes with them.
Back are Vince (Adrian Grenier), a big movie star, and his posse, “E” (Kevin Connolly), Johnny “Drama” (Kevin Dillon, grossly overdoing the sleazeball shtick), and Turtle (Jerry Ferrara), plus Ari (Jeremy Piven), Vince’s former agent and the new studio head who greenlights Vince’s costly directorial debut. When Vince’s movie overruns its budget, Ari attempts to soak the film’s Texan co-financier (Billy Bob Thornton) for more millions, which invites the financier’s dorky son (Haley Joel Osment), bedazzled by starlets, to play God with the project.
All this is an excuse for the usual buddy-buddy badinage, courtesy of writer-director Doug Ellin, and some occasionally funny, indignant real-life cameos from the likes of Warren Buffett, Liam Neeson, and Armie Hammer (the best one).
As a kind of hypothetical, second-string “Oceans” franchise, “Entourage” may have, to borrow movie studio jargon, legs. But it lacks heart and a head – which, I suppose, is also the point. This slick doodle of a movie is nothing so much as an advertisement for itself. Grade: C (Rated R for pervasive language, strong sexual content, nudity and some drug use.)