I woke up this morning.
Still blinded by the light beaming through my window, I stumbled in to the bathroom and brushed my teeth and hair. When I began to get dressed, I realized it.
My chest still hurts from laughing so hard last night.
You see, I went to a screening of the delightfully hysterical and clever 21 Jump Street (2012) yesterday evening, and I think I howled and guffawed my way through the entire 109 minute runtime.
21 Jump Street is of course, based on the original 80’s television series (where Johnny Depp first began to become widely popular) of the same name. Apart from the title and some key plot elements, the film doesn’t have too much in common with the television show. That’s not to say that fans of the series will be disappointed: the movie is just so much funnier.
We’re introduced to Schmidt (Jonah Hill) and Jenko (Channing Tatum) two cops who are the best of friends but complete and total opposites. Hill’s character is an insecure nerd who had a horrible high school career, complete with braces and a bleached blonde head of hair. Tatum’s character was the popular, muscly hunk, who always had the looks but never the brains. Teamed up together, they make one of the most hysterical pairings I’ve ever seen on screen.
When the cops are forced to go undercover to investigate the breakout of a new synthetic drug, action, more comedy, and some hardcore partying ensue.
Here 6 attributes I particularly loved about 21 Jump Street:
1. One of the very best things about this film is that it doesn’t take itself too seriously. The film defies typical Hollywood stereotypes and isn’t afraid to make fun of itself, many times. One of the best jokes includes a line about recycling “stuff from the 80’s” because people “lack creativity”. Awesome.
2. Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum really do make a perfect team. Tatum’s role is expected and typical for him, of course, but I will say that I was surprised to see how hysterical his character was. He had some of the sharpest and most funny lines in the movie, he and played them exceptionally. Props. Hill is charming and smart as Schmidt, and manages to carry the role in a seemingly effortless manner. Luckily, the viewer can see just how much fun all the actors had making the movie. And that, makes a film even more enjoyable to watch.
3. Dax Flame as a chemistry nerd: if you don’t know who Dax Flame is, he’s an internet star, and a phenomenal actor. Do yourself a favor and do a quick search for his videos. You’re welcome.
4. The over-the-top action stunts are tons of fun and sure to please the crowd. As I said, the film doesn’t take itself seriously, so these stunts aren’t MEANT to be totally in your face awesome, but at some points, they definitely are. Keep in mind all the action scenes are also hysterical. So. Cool.
5. Dave Franco’s character, Eric, was refreshingly unique and managed to ultimately mock today’s tree-hugging wanna-be activist teens. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for saving the environment, but Franco’s character is so out there and absurd its completely amusing. Franco plays him well and yes, he is the younger brother of the James Franco that we all know so well.
6. Johnny Depp’s cameo: being the star of the original television series, it was an absolute must to have Depp unexpectedly make an appearance at some point in the film. At what point in the film that he eventually shows up I won’t spoil, but I will say that it was such a clever shock that the elated audience instantly applauded. You’ll never guess it either.
This film was a pleasant surprise for me. I wasn’t particularly impressed by any of the trailers or television spots, and I feared that it would be filled with only moderately funny perverted gags and some dumb, typical slapstick humor.
I was SO wrong.
Yes, 21 Jump Street is extremely vulgar and loaded with F-bombs from start to finish. Its perverted and inappropriate, but its also pure witty fun. It’s 2012 first big surprise, and its sure to become March’s big box office hit fueled by word of mouth. I don’t think I’ve watched more hilarious scenes in a film, ever. The comedy is extremely well-written.
I’m even telling everyone its much funnier than The Hangover. Because it is.
21 Jump Street is in theaters March 16th. I say see it, but prepare to have tons of fun and some seriously sore abs afterwards.