***WARNING: CONTAINS SPOILERS***

Based on the television series from the eighties that made a teen idol out of Johnny Depp, 21 Jump Street is a loose sequel made for the big screen. We follow Morton Schmidt and Greg Jenko, two new and hopeless police officers who end up getting sent to become part of an undercover operation. This operation includes the two officers going undercover in high school in order to find out who has been supplying a number of drugs to the students.

21 Jump Street is written by Michael Bacall, who also wrote critical success Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, and Oscar nominee Jonah Hill who also portrays Schmidt. Hill’s co-star is Channing Tatum and the two are supported by Ice Cube, Dave Franco and Jake Johnson among others who all make this film what it is: a brilliant piece of comedy entertainment.

The film has, what seems to be, the quickest montage series in film as it takes place just five minutes into the story, if that! Opening with a flashback gives the audience a quick and easy indication as to what the two protagonists were like in high school and their relationship there. The story moves at a pretty fast pace to get to the beef of the story, the actual undercover work. This works well as it allows for comedy moments, not focussing on too much of the drama and getting the audience right into the action.

The comedy is fantastic. Some of the jokes are immature, some of the jokes are clever and the combination of the two works perfectly. There is physical comedy and verbal comedy which make for some real laugh out loud moments. Channing Tatum, although he has his critics, is hilarious in this film and Jonah Hill is also very funny. The two have a great chemistry on screen, stemmed from their off screen friendship, and gives a real belief to their friendship.

21 Jump Street is not a film that takes itself too seriously. And in doing so allows for some fantastic moments and in jokes which refer to the television series. These range from the subtle hint to ‘reviving a programme from the 80s’ to the television show being shown in the background of the final action scene and what will make fans of the television show happiest is that the real star of the show, Johnny Depp, even has a cameo!

Overall, 21 Jump Street provides over an hour and a half’s worth of great entertainment. There isn’t a lot there to make you think but that’s not what it attempts to do. The objective is to make the audience laugh and it certainly succeeds. The ending very much leaves itself open for a sequel, which is already being talked about. If Hill and Tatum are back on board then it should be great. If you want to see a brilliant comedy film, then look no further than 21 Jump Street.

My Rating: 8/10

 

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