Monday, June 18, 2007

"I just act, kid": Entourage

Well, for all the complaints about never seeing the filming process on this show, I thought Doug Ellin's idea for cramming it into one episode (cause this show couldn't stay away from LA antics for too long) was cute, despite being a little hackneyed.

What were the pluses? The production values on Medellin itself were pretty satisfying. Yeah, Vince's fatsuit isn't gonna win any Oscars, but the mini-Apocalypse Now final scene seemed pretty cool, especially considering a $30m budget. I liked Ari's bitching about the troubled production on his couch. In fact, the mockumentary was pretty well done in general, down to the mellow British director. Sure, one could ask why he really only concentrated on the main cast members and Billy, but this is a half hour comedy. Also, Perrey Reeves has been added to the cast. Yay Perrey! Not sure why Rex Lee doesn't have his name in lights too, but I'll let it go.

The minuses--Debi Mazar has been removed from the main credits! Bullshit! I know she was barely in season three, but I figured that was down to her pregnancy. She's fine as a recurring, but if you're gonna have Reeves in there...whatever. All I'm saying is, this season better have some Mazar. What else? Drama's "I hit on hot women and my career is a series of self-important anecdotes" is not funny in mockumentary form. Dillon was way too broad the whole episode. Shoulda been more Turtle--his little glances to the camera had me giggling. And Billy Walsh melting down was fine (I expected no less), but over a buxom Columbian maiden? Pretty contrived.

I'm on the fence about Medellin itself. I acknowledge that Ellin and his guys are gonna have a tough time writing a real masterpiece--we can't expect a crew of comedy writers to produce the next great gangster movie here. Still, the whole thing was like Scarface with a bit of John Woo. I'm fine if they sell the movie as a cult hit, or even a biggish hit, but seeing it at Cannes or winning Oscars is gonna be slightly more of a stretch. I figure I'll let it go, but still, Ellin knew the risk he was taking making an episode like this. As for Grenier/Vince's acting--who knew Pablo Escobar was such a mellow dude? We only saw a couple of scenes, but Escobar hardly seemed troubled during them. Maybe he was just being aloof. I'm a little glad they didn't do the Ramones movie, to be honest.

Next week, I figure, we'll be back to LA as the boys try and get the movie released/have it be a hit. This arc on Entourage is always a lot more fun than the "finding Vince's next project" arc. I liked it with Queen's Boulevard and heartily enjoyed it with Aquaman. So, I'm hoping for weeks of fun. Right?

Oh, and PS: Adam Goldberg on coke! Woo woo!


Carrie said...

I finally watched this ep last night. When it got to the scene where Medellin walks through the courtyard and there were tons of dead bodies around, I just thought, "Oh, so Medellin is Scarface. At least the rappers who do Cribs will like it." Then later Turtle laughed maniacally while watching the dailies, which completely backed up that theory. I do love Turtle.

I really, really, REALLY hope Medellin is a total flop. I hate how every season Vince's movie is in trouble until it comes out, and then it is a huge! success! and the character arcs never change. Take a risk, Entourage. Let Vince lose all his money and his artistic credibility. Make Drama the brother with the more stable career. Do it!!!

Joey said...

Of course Medellin is the new Scarface. that's the hook to keep us viewers interested.

and if you think it didn't work, check out this dude's blog where he compared the two.