THE ENTITLED is an edge-of-your-seat thriller that peeks into the mind of Paul (Kevin Zegers) who is struggling with the task of finding a job in a less than perfect economy. Like any graduate straight out of college, he longs to live the American dream. But with every interview ending with a sympathetic negative shake of the head, Paul begins to get frustrated. The fact that his mother’s prescriptions are not covered under insurance and cost around $1,000 per month makes him furious. And when the foreclosure notice arrives in the mail at their house, this young ambitious man realizes that the middle class he lives in is slowly dissolving around him. He’s finally had enough. He decides to take matters into his own hands by doing what any other 20-something-year-old would do when facing an uncertain future. It’s time to kidnap a handful of rich kids. And if he has to resort to murder…so be it.
The script is extremely well written and smart. Our three main villains carry the show. Gothic couple Jenna (Tatiana Maslany) and Dean (Devon Bostick) dabble in psychotic behavior and have made it their personal quest to antagonize the wealthy fellow college students on campus at any cost. They are both mentally and emotionally unstable. Clearly, this demonic duo offers the perfect partnership for the intricate kidnapping plan Paul has devised. He manipulates his way into their circle, earning the trust of Jenna through a few romantic trysts, and peaks the demonic interest of Dean by promising him a kill.
I always enjoy a movie where I can cheer for the underdog. THE ENTITLED throws an interesting twist into the classic “little guy takes down the big guy” storyline. Clearly, Paul does not have an issue with the idea of possible murder. Does his plan involve innocent people dying? No. If things go south will he pull the trigger? Sure. He has the potential to be a cold-blooded killer, a quality I never condone, yet I found myself actually rooting for this guy! While scaring the little rich girl tied up and blindfolded in the old shed out back, I would think, “I hope his Mom doesn’t pass away from cancer.” I believe I pulled for this guy to get the ransom money because I never figured he would actually shoot someone if given the unfortunate opportunity. I salute Zegers for bringing so much restrained emotion to the role.
The secondary storyline showcased the money grubbing fathers awaiting news on their kidnapped children. The regular cliches were avoided due to the fact that there were no police involved for the majority of the film. Instead, the audience witnesses three very rich men playing an intricate game of Russian Roulette with their own children. I found this storyline unbelievable. I was actually quite bored. Typically, I enjoy Liotta and Garber, but their performances were a little stale.
If you’re looking for a movie with twists and turns that lead you to an “ah ha!” moment in the final minutes, THE ENTITLED is for you. Does the villain get away with the crime? Does good/evil reign over evil/evil? You’ll have to watch and see to find out.
Video: 1080p High Definition: You could tell that the director intentionally made the kidnapping scenes dirty and gritty, while keeping the wealthy father scenes colorful and rich in detail.
Audio: DTS-HD Master Audio: The kidnapping scenes were definitely intense. Of course, I jumped at certain sounds since this was a thriller. Excellent audio quality.
THE ENTITLED: Behind the Scenes (11:20): The director and writers talk about how this is a thrilling drama with several twists and turns. According to this feature, the script is 10-years old and they’ve been waiting for the perfect director and actors to come along. They were lucky to get their first choices in Liotta and Zegers.
Alternate Ending (4:02): Paul’s Dad gives him a look in the final scene and says that he can’t go back to the mansion working as a driver. He tells him that everything is going to be okay. Then there’s a flash to the police finding the fake bomb detonator in his glove compartment as the Dad questions, “What is it?”