HTS Moderator , Reviewer
Title: 22 Jump Street
HTS Overall Score:86
“21 Jump Street” was not supposed to be the hit it was a couple years ago. Spinoff movies based on old TV show’s just aren’t that successful historically, especially old TV series that weren’t exactly great themselves. However, Phil Lord and Christopher Miller managed to pull off a hysterical comedy that modernized the concept of young faced looking cops going undercover at a High School with fantastic results. The movie was a bit Meta and managed to pull off a serious drama filled with side splitting comedy in a way that blended the best of both worlds. This time they’re back again, and we all know how sequel comedies end up. Avoiding the pitfalls of a myriad of sequel comedies before them, “22 Jump Streets” ups the ante, but manages to not take itself too seriously in its attempts to outdo the hijinks of movie before.
Jock Jenko (Channing Tatum) and chubby Schmidt (Jonah Hill), are back in action again. After a drug bust gone bad, the two are thrust back into the role of students once more, as their commander officer gives them carte blanch to up the ante as they return to the undercover scene. Captain Dickson (Ice Cube) reprises his role as their trash talking CO as the two go try to infiltrate a college drug ring, much like they did in the 1st movie….or as Deputy Chief Hardy (Nick Offerman) says, “EXACTLY the same thing as last time”. This time they have the roles a bit reverse. In their high school experiment, Jenko was the outcast and Schmidt took all the glory, but here they reverse the roles as Schmidt is the chubby nerd who can’t seem to get any breaks while Jenko gets to fulfill his jock dream of getting on the college football ring. Amidst taking classes, and trying to join a frat house, the dynamic duo are trying to find out who the dealer is of this new drug on campus. The only lead they have is a picture of a girl who overdosed on the drug and a side shot of the dealer, the only clue pertaining to his identity is a tattoo on his harm of a bazooka.
Things get weird in their little bromance when Jenko finds out that the fraternity head, Zook (Wyatt Russell) has the tattoo that they’re looking for on his arm and can’t come to grips with fact that his best buddy on campus may be the drug dealer. Schmidt, just as blind to the facts of life, drowns his sorrow of being “left behind”, by dating a beautiful art major, Maya (Amber Stevens), and crying his eyes out. Once both of the cops get their heads twisted on straight they realize that they’ve been going about this investigation all wrong, and the real kingpin has been playing them all for fools. Now it’s time for Jenko and Schmidt to bring out the big guns, put aside their differences, and catch a drug dealer once and for all, and of course cause as much panic and mayhem as they can.
As I said up top. Comedy sequels are a hard road to hoe, as they tend to use all the funny jokes in the first movie and either recycle the same jokes in the second movie, or try to cram all the second tier jokes in as that’s the only thing that they have left. Lord and Miller really decided to change the format a bit, for as the first movie was a bit self-aware (Meta) with a wink here and a nudge to the viewer to let them know the creators were in on the joke, “22 Jump Street” went WAY over the top with the winks and nudges as they pretty much broke the 4th wall consistently blasting us with a big huge wink wing, nudge nudge at every corner. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, but I have to admit that the majority of the time I was laughing myself silly at the little “in the know” jokes coming from the main characters. The whole movie is just zany and over the top, just like the first one, but there were times I felt they pushed it in the crazy direction a bit too far. The first 20-30 minutes of the movie were funny, but there was plenty of room for eye rolling and face palming too. It’s not till they accidentally take the new drug and get into “spy” mode that the movie starts taking off. From there on out it just amps to up to an incredible pace with the funny moments far outweighing the missed jokes. There’s a sequence during parent visitation week that had me reaching for my inhaler so much that I just kept it in my mouth and the rewind button was nearly worn out (I’m not going to spoil it, because it has to be the best scene in the movie and any hint whatsoever I give will ruin the gag).
I’m still flabbergasted at how well Hill and Tatum work together in this type of film. You’d honestly never guess that Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill’s comedy styles would give us one of the best Odd Couple type duos in a very long time. Tatum has more than enough humbleness to make fun of his big, buff, jock nature and that makes him all the more funny when he’s playing the dumb football star type character on screen and Hill is a master at playing a nerd. The result is a dynamic duo that will have your sides splitting as you watch them try to take on bad guys and taking their bromance to a whole new level. Ice Cube is Ice Cube. He’s loud, he’s angry and luckily he plays the straight guy the majority of the film, which is where his strengths lay. The addition of Maya and Zook are the two big characters that play a majority of screen time with our heroes and both Amber and Wyatt do a great jobs in the roles they’re given.
I have to say that “22 Jump Street” was one of the funnier comedies I’ve seen this year and after nearly having my soul sucked dry by “Tammy” this was a breath of fresh air in the review lineup. Some of the jokes don’t work, especially with them trying to outdo the previous movie, but the jokes that do land are so ridiculously funny that I can more than forgive the misses as I was laughing hysterically for a majority of the movie.
Rated R for language throughout, sexual content, drug material, brief nudity and some violence
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=32417[/img]“21 Jump Street” sported a rather dim and flat video encode when it came out, overlaid with a strangely yellow color grading to boot. Interestingly enough, “22 Jump Street” keeps with that same style of filming, which looks a bit grey and devoid of heavily saturated colors. The end result is a bit better than the first movie, but still lacks some of the detail and pop one would expect from a movie like this. The skin tones look a bit pasty and the yellow tones give them a kind of sickly hue. Colors are a bit brighter than the 1st movie, and there is definitely a bit more brightness to the picture, but the overall image isn’t going to wow and impress anyone. Still, there is plenty of fine detail, especially in the outdoor scenes where the brightness of the football field adds some pop and pizazz to the image. Black levels are usually pretty deep and inky, but due to the dim nature of the film they look a bit greyed out at times with some minor crush going on. Being that both films share the exact same look to them, I can only conclude that it is a stylistic choice, but one that doesn’t give a WOW type of Blu-ray image, even with the upgrade over the last movie.
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=32425[/img]The 5.1 DTS-HD MA audio, on the other hand, is a powerhouse track that roars with power. “21 Jump Street” was given a rocking audio track and the sequel follows suit, filled with deep and powerful bass to accentuate the gun shots and music, with an incredibly well done and dynamic range of sounds. The throbbing roar of the Lambo at the end of the movie just makes your pant legs vibrate and the pounding of spring break music down in Mexico hits you in the chest what that pulsating mid bass to balance out the party. Dialogue leaves nothing on the table, with excellent vocal clarity and a nice level of directivity along the front sound stage. There was excellent use of the surrounds during the movie with plenty of time to shine with the football games and chase scenes littered throughout the movie. Even the quieter scenes had plenty of action as you can hear the individual sounds of the police interns shuffling around in the background, or the whispering of students in a crowded coffee shop. Overall it’s an excellent track and one that lives up to the high praise of the first movie.
• The Perfect Couple of Directors
• Deleted Scenes/Extended Scenes
• Director's Commentary with Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum
• Everything is Better in College
• Jenko Split Video
• The Perfect Line: Ad-Libbing on Set
• The Dramatic Interpretations of "22 Jump Street" - The Version Without the Jokes!
• Don't Cut Yet: The Mr. Walter's Prison Scene
• New Recruits: Casting "22 Jump Street"
• Janning and Chonah
• Extended Zook and McQuaid Football Video
Sequels are always dicey, no matter the genre, but comedies just have this thing where the sequel is almost NEVER as good as the first movie. I had a blast with “21 Jump Street”, and while there were some definite changes to the format, I still had a blast with “22 Jump Street”. The move was about as Meta as you can get with plenty of things that were worse than the first movie, but it all balanced out with a TON of fresh ideas that had reaching for my inhaler more than once during the movie. The video is par for the course in comparison to the 1st outing, and the audio is just as awesome as we could have hoped for. We even have a VERY good set of extras (something that has been missing in many new releases lately) to round out the picture and makes this a definite watch, in my opinion. If you liked the first movie, this is a no brainer, and if you’re new to the series, than I heartily recommend hitting up Red Box or Best Buy and pulling a double feature, for both movies are on fire!
Starring: Channing Tatum, Jonah Hill, Ice Cube
Directed By: Phil Lord, Christopher Miller
Written By: Michael Bacall, Oren Uziel
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1 AVC
Audio: ENGLISH: DTS-HD MA 5.1, French (Canadian) DTS-HD MA, Spanish DD 5.1
Runtime: 112 Minutes
Blu-Ray Release Date: November 18th
Buy 22 Jump Street Blu-ray on Amazon
Recommendation: Watch It
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