Paul, Jenna and unstable Dean are busy in conjuring up a devious plan to make some fast cash. Paul, Jenna and Dean who are not even close to being rich as Jeff, Nick and Hailey manage to kidnap the latter mentioned trio and hold them up for ransom at Nick’s dads holiday home in the countryside. Richard, Clifford and Bob the rich business tycoon dads of the victims are taken by surprise when they receive a ransom call about their abducted teenage kids. Richard and Clifford are the only ones around when Paul call them up and make demands for 3 millions USD for the safety of their children. Bob is never punctual. Today his bad habit results in Jenna shooting down his son Jeff. The money transfer would be a walk in the park we think since the families are rich; however this does not turn out to be so. Richard runs short and is unable to fund the cash and neither is Clifford able to help since he uses his cash reserves for his part of the payment of the ransom. Their only hope is Bob who turns up late. Bobs son is already dead; how will he handle this news? Will he help his long time friends? Or will the children suffer the ill fate of death?
Canadian director Aaron Woodley does a great job with this script. Although a common plot, a movie that is thoroughly enjoyable if you appreciate the newbie cast with the exception of Ray Liotta and Victor Gaber. Newbie does not necessarily imply that the cast is in their debut production. However it implies that they are not Matt Damon, Gwyneth Paltrow and Kate Winslet. My passion for Ray Liottas work made me stumble upon this limited budget Canadian production; THE ENTITLED. I am hoping that my piece along with many others who have written on this movie aid her to reach out to viewers who don’t watch movies without a star cast. In fact I just did watch a movie with a star cast that was not as entertaining as THE ENTITLED; however she is more widely accepted. What if the cast of THE ENTITLED is interchanged with CONTAGION? Both movies would have made the news. Instead only one does.
Woodley’s direction and the resources he uses work for him at times and on the other hand do not work at all. The areal angled footage of the drive to the woods, the pleasant scenery and the gloomy lake house sets the perfect tone for the perfect thriller. Kevin Zegers convincing and precision performance that is supported by Devon Bostick all gels in alarmingly well for quite new faces. The veterans across on the end of the forest are equally doing well with Ray Liotta, Victor Gaber & Stephen McHatttie. What Woodley misses is what goes on in between the 2 locations. No pun intended but what Woodleys misses and loses points are the moments in the woods. This sudden drop of the thrills kind of makes one wonder if they should continue with the movie any longer. As much as the finale is a surprising treat the climax to it does need more tweaking and fine tuning. A commercial soundtrack most certainly would win more points in the right direction.
Nothing More Nothing Less
Title: The Entitled
Directed by: Aaron Woodley
Starring: Kevin Zegers, Devon Bostick, Tatiana Maslany, Stephen McHattie, VIctor Gaber & Ray Liotta.
Rated: R for language some violence and brief drug use.