News

REVIEW: ’22 Jump Street’ delivers again

REVIEW: ’22 Jump Street’ delivers again

Jonah Hill, Ice Cube, and Channing Tatum star in "22 Jump Street." Photo: Associated Press/Sony Pictures, Glen Wilson

Genre: Action, Comedy, Crime | Run Time: 112 min | Rated: R
Director: Phil Lord, Christopher Miller | Starring: Channing Tatum, Jonah Hill, Ice Cube

By: George Wolf

I’m not sure how it is that Phil Lord and Christopher Miller keep surprising us. By now, no matter how inane the project may sound, we should expect big things from the directors of Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, 21 Jump Street and The Lego Movie. And yet, who’d have guessed they’d deliver the goods yet again with their sequel, 22 Jump Street?

Self-aware without being glib, and fueled by the same good-hearted energy that marks the duo’s work, the film is both a hilarious send up of sequels, and the natural progression of a bro-mance. Schmidt (Jonah Hill) and Jenko (Channing Tatum) go undercover in college, where a new drug has killed a kid and may go global if it isn’t contained. This, except for the college part, is the identical plot of the first installment. Of course, that’s on purpose.

The meta-sequel is short on character development, but does take some time to explore a relationship that may have grown stale, that spark in their partnership starting to dim. Is it time for Jenko and Schmidt to investigate other suspects?

Rampant silliness continues to be the driving force in the franchise, and Hill and Tatum – as the doughy neurotic and chiseled dunderhead, respectively – are enjoyably, even masterfully silly. Again.

Expect a lot of the same, but enough differences to make the bumbling police work fun, and more than enough sight gags and wordplay to distract you from any other weaknesses. A little slam poetry, one walk of shame, and an unexpected Benny Hill bit are some highlights from a film absolutely littered with jokes. Some hit, some miss, but they just keep coming.

The always-dastardly Peter Stormare lends his talents in the villain role, while Jillian Bell (Workaholics) and Nick Offerman contribute their share of deadpan laughs. There are some pretty great cameos, as well, but I cannot tell you how much I hoped to see James Franco when the investigation headed to the beach for Spring Break.

Besides that missed opportunity, 22 suffers from a few lags in its otherwise frantic momentum. It would have behooved Lord and Miller to trim about 10 minutes from the effort – just not the ten that play over the credits, brainstorming assignment after assignment, sequel after sequel, in glorious fashion.

Whatever its faults, like its predecessor, 22 Jump Street is no classic but it is good for a lot of laughs. Few have made “more of the same” look so good.

Verdict-3-5-Stars

Latest Stories

in Entertainment

Samuel L. Jackson plans Christmas charity single

Fresh
samueljackson

The "Pulp Fiction" star is rounding up his celebrity friends to raise money for the cancer charity One For The Boys.

in Entertainment, Sports

Shaq sings Bon Jovi song at crowded college bar

shaq

WATCH: The basketball legend jumped on stage at an LSU-area bar to belt out a Bon Jovi classic.

in Entertainment

Rihanna, Kardashian among latest victims of photo hackers

rihanna

Gabrielle Union, Meagan Good, and Hayden Panettiere are reportedly also among the latest celebrities to have shots posted online.

in Music, Entertainment

The Biebs filmed a music video with The Hoff

hasselhoff

David Hasselhoff has been recruited by Justin Bieber and Cody Simpson to star in a new music video.

in Music

U2 star to develop homes in California

theedge

The Edge has won a long-running battle to develop his land in California.