Wednesday, 9 July 2014

22 Jump Street

I hope you’ll forgive me for overlooking this comedy sequel for some time now. I didn’t see it as anything to be excited about, I may have enjoyed 21 Jump Street but comedy sequels usually disappoint on so many levels. This one however is far bigger in budget, scope and star factor. And it has worked brilliantly.
Having successfully broken a high school drug ring, our two favourite undercover cops Schimdt and Jenko are assigned to infiltrate a college and to bring down the latest drug craze. It sounds like a carbon copy of the first film, and yet somehow 22 is able to take the comedy a step further whilst echoing the original, which is what a sequel should do. As well as this the film has some fairly decent action sequences (no, seriously) which help remind the viewer that the characters are apparently in real danger.
So then, what is different? Well to start with the makers have obviously been more adventurous when developing this film. Every element feels like it would have been left out of the first film due to the less ambitious scale of it. In this case that is a very good thing, like I said before a comedy sequel needs to reflect the old one in some form and that is a good way to do it, through repetition and sticking to the formula that made the first film good, the jokes become funnier and funnier. To put this opinion simply, it’s the same as the last one, just bigger and as a result, better.
Somehow, amid all of the extra elements a bit of character development is included. The plot isn’t up to much when compared to more elaborate espionage films, so I won’t claim that this film works as a comedy and a standalone action film, it doesn’t. It is a comedy, and nothing else. But that is by no means a bad thing, I would rather have an excellent comedy than a bad mix of more than one genre, because if you fail at one you fail at all of them. By keeping their intention of making a comedy very clear the producers have kept their eye on the goal and scored in brilliant fashion.
The cast remains at the heart of the film. Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum have now come to form one of the most hilarious on screen double acts of the last decade. Maybe it’s because I associate it with them now, but as soon as I see them standing side by side brandishing pistols I immediately start laughing yet still taking them seriously in a small and completely necessary way.
It’s not perfect; there are a few jokes that are repeated once too often, losing their effect as a result. And it lacks the pace and tightness of 21. This is a large problem as it is essential for this kind of film to keep the audience laughing at all times. There are a few moments, however rare they are, where I found myself desperate to get back into the action of the story. But luckily when the film does reach its moments of silliness, it goes full on. There is a good time to tell if you are reaching a five minute segment that lacks pace, if the pace you have just witnessed shows any signs of slowing at all, you might be able to afford to get a few refreshments, you won’t miss much.
Overall though, 22 Jump Street is by a long way the best comedy sequel of all time. That does seem to be quite a bold statement, but right now nothing else springs to mind that has matched and bettered the original on such a scale (if you disagree leave a comment). If the writers can keep this up, I see a 23 Jump Street on the horizon.
Result: 8/10  

No comments:

Post a Comment