An insurance lawyer goes out on the town to celebrate an upcoming promotion with his co-worker, Jeff. But their night takes a turns bizarre when Frank ingests a hallucinogen that completely alters his perception of the world.
Frank, an opportunistic insurance lawyer, thinks he's in for the time of his life when he goes out on the town to celebrate an upcoming promotion with his co-worker, Jeff. But their night takes a turn for the bizarre when Frank is dosed with a hallucinogen that completely alters his perception of the world, taking him on a psychedelic quest through board meetings, nightclubs, shootouts, and alternate dimensions. As Frank ping-pongs between reality and fantasy, he finds himself on a mission to find a missing girl, himself - and his wallet.
It's better than your average stoner flick, alright! [+59%]
The Wave turned out to be visually superior and far better in storytelling than most stoner thrillers out there. Justin Long's the perfect choice to play Frank, a white-collar employee who's out for a night of merry-making with his colleague Jeff (Donald Faison). They meet Natalie (Katia Winter) and Theresa (Sheila Vand) at a bar and decide to head to a rave party. A drug he consumes at the party sends him on an unending trip that bends the concept of time (and eventually, decisions). The storyline gets a little convoluted in the latter half with several twists, but the screenplay (by Carl W. Lucas) wraps it up quite neatly in the end.
The 'drug trip' for Frank begins with intermittent hallucinatory episodes, making you think this is yet another film that holds a warning sign for people to never do drugs. However, it focuses more on its psychedelic visuals, a missing-person storyline (I think I'm in love with Sheila Vand!), and some not-bad humor along the way. On the downside, the subplots involving Frank's promotion (the evil insurance company cliché) and his wife walking out on him don't carry the narrative weights they should. These incidents, while pivotal to the main plot (of Frank, Jeff, and Natalie searching for the missing Theresa), somehow feel less consequential.
When you look at the complete picture, I felt The Wave tries to incorporate too much into its 90-minute runtime and succeeds in parts. That said, the amusement factor was certainly on the higher side for me.
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