You already know how ‘We Are Your Friends’ ends based on the trailer alone, but the movie is saved by it’s charismatic lead, Zac Efron. Check out our review!
Zac Efron, 27, has already proven himself a reliable male lead in numerous different films, but thanks to We Are Your Friends we can safely say he now has a future in the drama genre. WAYF tells the story of Cole (Efron), a struggling DJ who seemingly only has his three closest friends — or shall I say, fellow struggling deadbeats — to rely on. That is until he befriends an overly successful DJ, James Reed (Wes Bentley), who pulls him under his wing. Unfortunately, Cole is quick to betray James, which puts his entire future in jeopardy.
I’m going to put this very bluntly, okay? There are three things about We Are Your Friends that are absolutely outstanding, and they are as follows: the music, the cinematography, and Zac Efron. The story, however, will not leave you asking for more.
In director/screenwriter Max Joseph‘s first feature film, he excelled at painting a beautiful picture of Los Angeles, specifically the San Fernando Valley, and directing Zac Efron into mastering his role as up-and-coming DJ Cole. The problem is that WAYF is extremely predictable, in the sense that as soon as you meet Cole and learn of his dreams to become an internationally known DJ, you know that’s how the movie ends. No spoiler alert needed there, because you likely predicted that just by watching the trailer above.
But, that’s not to say that WAYF isn’t entertaining. Not only does Zac truly shine as a troubled leading man trying to find his path in life, but the supporting cast really came to play. Wes Bentley is pretty terrifying as DJ James Reed, who has the fame and success Cole dreams of but seems to be miserable with it. Emily Ratajkowski is the spirited Sophie, James’ girlfriend and Cole’s dream girl, who unintentionally drives a wedge between the two. And then there are Cole’s friends, Mason (Jonny Weston), Ollie (Shiloh Fernandez), and Squirrel (Alex Shaffer), who are three very different people. Even though the four of them make their living selling drugs and promoting parties in the City of Angels, Mason is a troublemaker in desperate need of anger management, Ollie is an aspiring actor who seems to be the ring leader when it comes to their drug dealing, and Squirrel is the quiet one who appears as if he’s just along for the ride.
Even though you know where the story is headed, Zac puts so much heart into Cole that you can’t help but root for him anyway. It’s Zac’s earnest ability to make Cole likable, despite his numerous mistakes in both his personal and professional lives, that holds your attention. You want to see Cole succeed, and you want to see him finally get the break he fought so hard for. There’s just something about Zac that captures you, and no, it’s not just the fact that he’s genetically blessed and physically flawless. He’s a great actor, and if WAYF leaves you with anything it’s the knowledge that Zac’s career is really only just beginning.
We Are Your Friends lands in theaters on Friday, Aug. 25, 2015.
Tell us, HollywoodLifers — Are you excited for We Are Your Friends? If you’ve seen it already, what did you think? Comment below!
— Lauren Cox