Movie review: 22 Jump Street is a sequel about sequels | Arts
Arts
INDY Week's arts blog

Archives | RSS | Follow on

Friday, June 13, 2014

Movie review: 22 Jump Street is a sequel about sequels

Posted by Google on Fri, Jun 13, 2014 at 1:13 PM

click to enlarge Self-referential sequel-itus in 22 Jump Street - GLEN WILSON
  • Glen Wilson
  • Self-referential sequel-itus in 22 Jump Street
22 Jump Street
★★★
Now playing


Whereas 21 Jump Street (the 2012 film, not the 1987 TV series it was based on) was a remake about remakes, 22 Jump Street is a sequel about sequels. It starts with a cheeky “Previously on ...” lead-in and ends with closing-credits clips that tease a menagerie of faux follow-ups to come.

Indeed, an early monologue from Deputy Chief Hardy (Nick Offerman) that ostensibly assigns screw-up cops Morton Schmidt (Jonah Hill) and Greg Jenko (Channing Tatum) back to the Jump Street beat forecasts the film’s form and function. Surprised by the success of the revived Jump Street program, in which Schmidt and Jenko posed as high school students to investigate a campus drug ring that already killed one student, higher-ups (see also: producers) have thrown money at the project to keep it going.

The partners’ not-so-new assignment? Pose as college students to investigate a campus drug ring that has already killed one student. “Infiltrate the dealers, find the supplier,” snarls still-cantankerous Captain Dickson (Ice Cube) … again.

The differences between the films are purposefully minute: a change of address; a Vietnamese Jesus effigy replacing a Korean one. Otherwise, 22 Jump Street embraces its self-referential sameness with satirical gusto, with the rotund, neurotic Hill and hunky lunkhead Tatum channeling a profane, meta-modern Abbott and Costello.

Schmidt and Jenko again fall in and out of a bro-mance whose homoeroticism blossoms into full-blown parody. They wind up holding hands on a psychology professor’s couch after he misunderstands their use of the word “partners.” As opposed to their fish-out-of-water high school identities, Schmidt and Jenko gravitate back to their true (stereo)types at the fictional college Metro City State. After joining the football team, Jenko latches onto the flaxen-haired Zook (Wyatt Russell), his simpatico quarterback and party-hearty frat brother. Meanwhile, Schmidt is back to being the nerdy outcast, although that doesn’t prevent a one-night-stand with Maya (Amber Stevens), another beauty way out of his league.

It all culminates in another setting of teenage debauchery—instead of senior prom, this time it’s spring break in Mexico, where the sexual innuendo becomes as flaccid as the hunt for the real bad guys. No matter: 22 Jump Street subsists on the sneaky comic acumen of its stars, whether it’s Tatum’s blank stares, Hill’s loquacious overconfidence or Ice Cube destroying an entire luncheon buffet.

Directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller (who spent their time between Jump Streets making the equally meta The LEGO Movie) also remind us that comedy, in being able to cross the cultural correctness that shackles drama and other genres, is often the most accurate snapshot of society. But if you want to track social progress—well, I guess you’ll have to wait for the sequel.

Tags: , , , , ,

Pin It

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

INDY Week publishes all kinds of comments, but we don't publish everything.

  • Comments that are not contributing to the conversation will be removed.
  • Comments that include ad hominem attacks will also be removed.
  • Please do not copy and paste the full text of a press release.

Permitted HTML:
  • To create paragraphs in your comment, type <p> at the start of a paragraph and </p> at the end of each paragraph.
  • To create bold text, type <b>bolded text</b> (please note the closing tag, </b>).
  • To create italicized text, type <i>italicized text</i> (please note the closing tag, </i>).
  • Proper web addresses will automatically become links.

Latest in Arts



Twitter Activity

Most Recent Comments

You stopped the arts coverage to cover the election..... You were probably better off just covering the arts, rather than …

by Matt Price on Will to Live Cautiously Returning? Here's a Few Things to Do This Week. (Arts)

Thanks for being there. You will be missed.

by vidvis on Theater News: Common Ground Theatre to Go Dark in December (Arts)

Dude you got me the interest to read more, thanks to your content. Great thanks for that. There are some …

by mjoshuagarcia on Movie Review: Captain America: Civil War Is Like Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice with a Marvel Smirk Instead of a DC Frown (Arts)

We didn't receive the photo credit with the picture, but I'm happy to add it now.

by Brian Howe, INDY managing editor for arts & culture on Dance Review: Ashley McCullough's Conscious Oblivion Leaps Out at Emergence (Arts)

Thank you so much for this amazing review and I would like to say thanks to Chris Walt Photography for …

by TriangleDanceProject on Dance Review: Ashley McCullough's Conscious Oblivion Leaps Out at Emergence (Arts)

Comments

You stopped the arts coverage to cover the election..... You were probably better off just covering the arts, rather than …

by Matt Price on Will to Live Cautiously Returning? Here's a Few Things to Do This Week. (Arts)

Thanks for being there. You will be missed.

by vidvis on Theater News: Common Ground Theatre to Go Dark in December (Arts)

Most Read

No recently-read stories.

Visit the archives…

© 2016 Indy Week • 201 W. Main St., Suite 101, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
RSS Feeds | Powered by Foundation