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“THE WAVE” Riding the Crest




Review by John Delia

It’s been a while since seeing a movie like The Wave. “Have you ever awakened from a dream so real that for a moment you can’t remember where you are? This movie is a lot like that”. With a very good cast including Justin Long, Donald Faison and Sheila Vand, the movie will have you totally entrenched in one man’s wrong choices that put him on a night from which he’ll likely never recover. It’s a fun sci-fi drama and one of the better thriller’s you’ll see this year. Take a wild ride on Frank’s one night of pleasure and you’ll wake up in the morning totally “refreshed” knowing it wasn’t you.

Frank (Justin Long) in THE WAVE from Epic Pictures Group

A corporate lawyer for a big firm and married with a stack of bills to pay, Frank (Justin Long) has a choice to make tomorrow morning that will determine his whole future. His best friend Jeff (Donald Faison) from college works for the same firm and when he realizes that Frank has a chance to make it big, he gets him to loosen up with a stop off after work for a drink at a watering hole called The Madrid. While at the bar Jeff has met two lovely women, Natalie (Katia Winter) and Theresa (Sheila Vand) who are a bit tipsy and they have settled into a booth. After being introduced to the two women, Frank gets paired off with Theresa and the two hit it off.

Natalie suggest they go to a party she’s been invited to and the four leave the bar for a house in the burbs. While at the party Theresa and Frank wander into a room occupied by a drug lord and he offers the two of them a new experience drug. When Frank locks lips with Theresa and they kiss with a drop of the potion from the drug lord, it’s an explosion of a mind altering high. Waking up the next morning, Frank realizes that his wife will be waiting at home, he’ll be late for his important meeting with his boss, and his wallet has been stolen.

Jeff (Donald Faison) in THE WAVE from Epic Pictures Group

The film goes on from there with a swift and dangerous story that titillates the imagination and consumes the hour and thirty minutes as if it were half that time. Director Gille Klabin wastes no time diving into the story with a quick overview of Frank’s personal life with his superficial wife Cheryl (Sarah Minnich) before having him show up at the office. He works his audience with two of the best actors in the business as they get involved with a whole lot of forbidden things. It’s a night that Frank won’t remember until it all comes crashing down on him.

Justin Long makes Frank the perfect innocent who is just about to make it big with his firm. You know the kind “I busted my butt and now I’m finally going to make it big” employee. But, being that wide-eyed guy that really enjoyed his college years with his best buddy, what’s an after work drink and a few hours of pre-celebration?

The Drug Lord in THE WAVE from Epic Pictures Group

In support is another favorite Donald Faison as the best friend you always have to think twice about following to a wild joint. Jeff knows Frank is married, and even though she’s a wet blanket, setting his best friend up with a hotty like Theresa and not checking up on him is way out of line. When Frank finds out his cell phone and wallet’s been stolen and there’s no cash to get himself a ride home to get ready for his big meeting, Jeff’s answer is “You took drugs from a complete stranger?” I have always liked Faison starting with his Dr. Christopher Turk in the TV series “Scrubs”.

The Wave has been rated R by the MPAA for strong drug content and language throughout, some disturbing images and sexual references. Directed at the late teens thru twenties market, if the word gets out in will do fine if it gets a long theatrical release.

FINAL ANALYSIS: A cool film that keeps you waiting for the next shoe to drop. (3.5 out of 5 stars)

Additional Film Information:
Cast: Justin Long, Donald Faison, Tommy Flanagan, Katia Winter, Sheila Vand, Bill Sage, Sarah Minnich,
Directed by: Gille Klabin
Genre: Sci-fi, Drama, Situation Comedy
MPAA Rating: R for strong drug content and language throughout, some disturbing images and sexual references
Running Time: 1 hr. 30 min.
Opening Date: January 17, 2020
Distributed by: Epic Pictures Group
Released in: Theaters

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