The uncover buddy cop hijinks continue in 22 Jump Street. After screwing up a drug bust, officers Schmidt (Jonah Hill) and Jenko (Channing Tatum) are sent back into the Jump Street undercover program, now located across the street at number 22. Their task this time is to go undercover as college students and find the supplier of a drug called "WHYPHY." While at college, Jenko finds a calling for himself as he befriends a jock named Zook (Wyatt Russell) and becomes a star football player. This causes strain in his partnership with Schmidt, who feels lefts out, despite connecting with a girl named Maya (Amber Stevens). However, as they come closer to the supplier, Jenko and Schmidt have to learn to put their differences aside and work together.
When 21 Jump Street ended up being a big comedy hit two years ago, I was left scratching my head. I have not seen the original 1987-1991 television series starring Johnny Depp, but I don’t think that it was the dumb comedy that the film ended up being. Even though I wasn’t the craziest about the film, I suppose it became a hit for its stupid humour and the chemistry between Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum. It is then no surprise that the entire team would be brought back together for a sequel, which is literally more of the same.
Just like the original, 22 Jump Street is a film, where I would find some of the scenes funny, but ultimately shrug it off once the credits have rolled. In fact, the biggest change from the first film is the growing homoeroticism between Schmidt and Jenko, who also find themselves growing apart. Also, while its use was funny in the original, 22 Jump Street really starts to overdo it on the fourth wall breaking self-referential humour.
While some of these jokes did hit the mark for me, it becomes too much when the characters begin talking about the action going over-budget. In fact, the best bit of self-referential humour in the film involves the scenes that play out during the end credits, which is probably the best joke of the entire film. There is also a gag involving Jenko and a delayed reaction to an awkward situation, which probably got the biggest laughs out of me.
So, when I finally got around to watching 22 Jump Street today, after skipping it opening weekend, I was once again left scratching my head why these films are so appealing. Sure, I found some of the jokes to be funny, but sometimes that isn’t enough. As such, just like the first film, I find 22 Jump Street to be little more than occasionally funny stupidity, which I completely forget about when I leave the theatre.6 | WATCHABLE