Saturday, June 30, 2012

"21 Jump Street" Review

    Ok. Be honest. Who else thought this one would suck? This is 21 Jump Street!

    21 Jump Street is based off a TV show that is famous for, if nothing else, contributing to making then relatively-unknown Johnny Depp a star. The movie version follows Schmidt (Jonah Hill, who also co-wrote the film) and Jenko (Channing Tatum), two former enemies in high school, who become friends after joining the police academy. When they screw up their first arrest, the two get re-assigned to the newly-revived Jump Street division, which specializes in sending young-looking cops undercover in high schools in order to catch criminals. This time, Schmidt and Jenko have to find out who is distributing a deadly drug called H.F.S.
    21 Jump Street is a good comedy, which is what makes it one of the hardest movies to review. You see, the main reason why the movie is good is because it is (very) funny, but if I tell you why it's funny (AKA tell you the jokes), then the movie won't be as good. So, let's just say 21 Jump Street get 5 and a half stars out of 6.

    OK. Fine, I'll review more.

Sometimes's not quite right here.
    Much of the reason the movie works so well, other than being freaking hilarious, is the excellent performance by pretty much the entire cast. Hill continues his winning streak after excelling in last year's (Otherwise decent, in my opinion) Moneyball, Hill plays Schmidt with just enough of a loser-ish type feel that you feel sympathy for him without him being the butt of all the joke. Tatum, who before here I was willing to completely forget he existed is phenomenal in this. He gamely does hilarious slapstick and is the butt of many jokes, playing the "dumb" one of the group. He brings more personality to the role than I expected an in this one film, became an actor to keep an eye on.
    Brie Larson, Rob Riggle, Ice Cube and Dave Franco (Little brother of James) round out the rest of the excellent cast, playing the love interest, jerk gym teacher, stereotypical black captain and the cool kid respectively. The story is decent enough. It won't break new ground and it does go on a bit long, but it give the actors a great platform to jump their jokes off of.

Best buds.

    21 Jump Street is easily one of the most surprising films of the year. The cast, especially Channing Tatum, is fantastic, gamely delivering the smart humor in droves. The plot make move too slowly for some people and it certainly isn't breaking new ground, but it is good enough to keep you interested. This movie is great. What more can you say? 21 Jump Street gets 5 and a half stars out of 6. 

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