Thursday, June 21, 2012

21 Jump Street (2012)

In this comedy action flick, Schmidt (Jonah Hill) was a dork and Jenko (Channing Tatum) was the popular jock when they were in high school (in 2005). After graduation, both of them joined the police force seven years later (2012) and ended up as partners riding bicycles in the city park. Since they are young and look like high school students, they are assigned to an undercover unit to infiltrate a drug ring that is supplying high school students synthetic drugs. In their pretend high school life, the tables have turned; Schmidt turned out to be the popular kid while Jenko's demeanor made him look like the weirdo or even the loser. They meet different kinds of kids, make new friends, fight their way to accomplish their mission and struggle to retain their jobs.

The story reminded me of the 90's movie "Never Been Kissed" where the female star (journalist played by Drew Barrymore) became an undercover reporter and went back to high school to complete an article in their paper about the teenage generation. This time, the protagonists are male cops and the purpose is different. Overall, the plot was really simple and pretty predictable. It seemed different aspects of the story were copied from typical teen flicks and action films, woven together to create a seemingly original story. What made it interesting was the funny dialogues and scenes. I was actually laughing most of the time! Watch out though for young viewers: there's a lot of cursing, teenage drinking, drug use, violence and some sex.

Playing the role of Schmidt and Jenko was just a breeze for the 2 actors. After all, it's relatively easy to play underachieving-bordering-almost-dumb policemen than to play real bad-ass or serious cops, which would require a lot of skills and swagger. In the beginning of the film, there seems to be no chemistry with the two but they really did a good job on making their best friend (or brotherhood) relationship look genuine as the movie progressed. Ice Cube's portrayal of Captain Dickson was so hilarious even though he tried to make it look so serious. Thumbs up! The kids of the current generation in America are portrayed in a sarcastic manner (blaming TV shows like Glee for what they have become) which added to the comedy.

The film was fast-paced. The action scenes were not overly made so as not to make them look dragging. Even so, these scenes never failed to excite the viewers. There was really a good mix of comedy and action in this movie. I can't even remember boring scenes!

Many realities can be seen in the film. Generations of teenagers evolve - the standards of what is cool and not cool in the past may not be the same today. The problems of society like drugs, racism, bullying, environment awareness, among others, were wittily incorporated in the story. Although predictable, the least the story can do was to teach that true friends can still be found, that hard work pays off, and that good will win over evil in the end.

I liked the film. It's fun and it doesn't take itself too seriously. I will recommend this movie if you're looking for something to make you laugh and keep a smile on your face after.

My rating: 85%

Source (storyline):


  1. Rather than a re-hash of the original, though, this is a re-imagining by Hill, who ... set it in the present with appropriate nods to the original and a whole lot of silliness. Nostalgia has rarely been better served and Tatum hasn't been better. Great jobs by everybody involved which sets the bar pretty high-up this year for comedies. Good review Vinci.

    1. I haven't seen the original version yet. Will try to watch it. I do agree though that a great job has been done by the team behind this comedy flick. :)


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