15th Feb2018

‘Entanglement’ Review

by Kevin Haldon

Stars: Thomas Middleditch, Jess Weixler, Diana Bang, Johannah Newmarch, Nicole LaPlaca, Randal Edwards, Marilyn Norry, Jena Skodje | Written by Jason Filiatrault | Directed by Jason James

entanglement-poster

Back in my video shop days (I have mentioned that before right?) I used to love finding hidden gems. You know, the movies that you never saw a trailer for, never saw them near the cinema they just kind of arrived in your local video shop and you were immediately drawn to them. Some examples off the top of my head could be the likes of Mean Creek, Donnie Darko, Napolean Dynamite, Bubba Ho Tep or any number of others. The thing that always got me into them was the unassuming box cover and that one actor that made you go “Oooooh I like him”.

Entanglement struck me as one of those movies that, while looking hugely unassuming, was going to surprise the crap out of me. Plus it stars actor Thomas Middleditch, from HBO’s comedy-drama Silicon Valley. If you gave that show more than a couple of episodes you would know that, ye,s he does has some great comedy chops BUT can also play the serious scenes just aswell, not to mention his keen grasp of dialogue. And with this movie he really stretches his range to deliver a knockout performance…

Ben Layten (Middleditch) is searching for the meaning of his existence, after numerous failed suicides he begins to wonder where it all went wrong for him? what life choice led him down this path?. Upon learning his mum and dad hid an almost adopted sister (yes almost) from him, he begins to wonder if that was the point his life deviated from its course. He embarks on a quest to find his would be sister Hanna (Jess Weixler) but what he discovers when he does find her is true love???. Of course this complicates things no end as Ben starts to discover that everything in his life may just be way more connected than he could ever of imagined.

OK, lets be blunt. Not only is Entanglement very well written, superbly executed, and beautifully acted, but it manages to hit you on practically every level. From the somber and sad opening of the suicide, to the unpredictable happy go lucky nature of his life upon meeting Hanna and the gut punching third act. I absolutely loved this movie and was totally mesmerized by the two leads… Especially in the last 20 minutes!

Director Jason James and writer Jason Filiatrault have brought something special to the table with Entanglement. What at times could be taken as strange choices are actually striking visuals that add so much heart to the movie and what come across as little throwaway lines or scenes are hugely important.

Thomas Middleditch and Jess Weixler are superb in their roles and put it all out there, in a movie that has so many layers I will be taking a second watch to peel them back. Weixler especially has a hard job to do in this movie, as the audience is not really sure how to feel about this sexy siren and she treads that fine line (personally I loved her from the get go). The supporting cast too all put in strong performances, with a special mention for Diana Bang as Tabby – she provides the right amount of humor and acts as the audiences compassion to our male lead.

I laughed at Entanglement, I had a huge lump in my throat with Entanglement and while I don’t want to give anything away there is a certain scene atop a diving board that is… beautiful! I cant remember the last time I watched a movie and all the hairs on the back of my neck stood up. As you can tell this is a strong recommend from me!

Entanglement is currently enjoying a 10-city theatrical run across the US via Dark Star Pictures.

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