21 Jump Street
21 Jump Street (2012)
starring Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum
directed by Phil Lord and Chris Miller
and written by Michael Bacall based on a TV series by Patrick Hasburgh and Stephen J. Cannell
In Channing Tatum’s first real comedy debut he teams up with rising Superbad star Jonah Hill to adapt the crime drama into a comedy. Tatum and Hill star as two childish cops assigned to work undercover at a high school to discover the source of a new drug. The story of two unexpected friends overcoming their differences to solve the crime is an overworked buddy cop cliché, but it is presented and executed entertainingly despite its occasional predictability. Tatum hits it off with some great moments, playing up his stupidity, but never really excels. Unfortunately a majority of the best jokes were in the trailer, and the comic timing of Hill and Tatum, although often worth a good laugh, was sometimes off-putting and indiscreet. Worth a varied cheap laugh, the characters were underdeveloped and subsequently uninteresting. The occasional cameo from Ice Cube, Rob Riggle, and Bridesmaids alum Ellie Kemper was refreshing. There was a great surprise cameo at the end, but the conclusion still felt forced and rushed. While I kept rooting for it to pick up, the movie never reaches a climax. It seems to lack any replay quality, but wasn’t overly impressive as a one-off comedy piece. Though the overall film had its shining moments, it never particularly ascends mediocrity falling victim to inconsistent comic tone, a disorganized story exposition, and a limited and lacking degree of originality.
Final Score: 3.1 out of 5