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Film Review: "We Are Your Friends"


An electronic tone poem of millennial angst set to a throbbing bassline, "We Are Your Friends" focuses on aspiring EDM artist Cole (Zac Efron) and his bros -- Ollie (Shiloh Fernandez), Mason (Jonny Weston), and Squirrel (Alex Shaffer) -- living it up in the San Fernando Valley, hoping to find their fortune. Though the story is nothing we haven't seen -- an earnestly traditional coming-of-age story -- Max Joseph directs the hell out of it. Drawing on his background as video director for Good Magazine, Joseph utilizes text overlays and flashy motion graphics as effective tools for building his tale about finding one's artistic voice. Wes Bentley delivers a great performance as a jaded, but more experienced DJ who mentors Cole and imparts his wisdom.

There's also an art gallery drug trip that's an all-timer. The film is packed with so many great details (anytime it gets into the intricacies of DJing, it's great) that it moves with an irresistible energy all its own.