Movie Review: “21 Jump Street”

   As the sequel suggests in its trailers, in 2012, nobody was interested in seeing this reboot of the 1987 television series. It absolutely felt like a bizarre decision, definitely something worth your head over. Then, it was revealed that the film would actually be a buddy cop film, and that didn’t exactly make matters any better.

   However, like the sequel also suggests in the trailers, the film got lucky.

   21 Jump Street is a 2012 American action comedy film directed by Phil Lord and Christopher Miller. Both are other-wise known for their work writing and directing the Lego Movie and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. The film stars Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum, scripted by Michael Bacall with a story done by him and Hill. The story follows around two completely opposite sides of the spectrum. Morton Schmidt was a reject in high-school, prospering academically, but failing socially, whereas the opposite was true for Greg Jenko. They both become police officers, and after a long-time of nothing, they are actually given something to sink their teeth into. The film follows the two officers being forced to relive high school as undercover cops trying to prevent the outbreak of a new synthetic drug and arrest its supplier.

   The film is self-aware of its own ridiculousness, and brings a satirical side to a genre that is often lacking in wit. It mocks the fact that its existence may or may not be solely as a rehash of old ideas. There are a lot of funny moments throughout the movie, and it’s surprising, because this is the same movie that I was left scratching my head about beforehand. I’ll be honest in saying that I have never been too much of a fan when it comes to Jonah Hill or Channing Tatum. It’s actually an inside-joke with a couple of my friends that they are the two-actors that I absolutely despise. I don’t actually despise them, but I didn’t really care for a lot of their work. Jonah always seemed crueler and unlikeable more than he did funny, whereas Channing Tatum is too attractive, and it, well, it frustrates me.

   His romantic-comedies and action-films aren’t exactly the best either.

   However, I am surprised to say that they are both what hold this film together. They have a lot of chemistry with one another, and a lot of it is in-fact left untapped in this movie. The rest of the cast holds up well also, Ice Cube isn’t exactly known for his gripping and diverse performances, but he’s likable to have around. The latter can also be said for Nick Offerman. If there are any problems with the script, it could be said that there were moments of vulgarity that were there solely for the sake of vulgarity. However, a lot of that seems to come with the territory in these kinds of films, and I am only happy that they were able to keep it proportioned in such a way that blatant and self-aware outlandishness out-weighed everything else.

   In conclusion, as I don’t want to start retreading things that I have already said, this film is a well put-together comedy. It doesn’t have the most brilliant of scripts. It keeps it relatively simple. However, it does have a self-aware humor that has and will continue to be appreciated. It also has humor in-general, sometimes hit or miss for this viewer, but it might be enjoyed more by others. It doesn’t have very much depth in characters, but the portrayals aren’t bad. They are light-heart and likeable, both Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill seeming easing very comfortably in their roles, and it’s worth the watch. It’s a solid comedy film.

   Thanks for reading…

Rating: – Good

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