“21 Jump Street” was kind of a surprise hit as well as a launchpad.
Channing Tatum was the star of middling action flicks and sappy tearjerkers. Jonah Hill was still thought of as that funny guy who looks like Seth Rogen, but wasn’t him. Directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller’s only cinematic credit was the animated children’s movie “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs.”
After “21 Jump Street” came out in 2012, Tatum and Hill became household names and Lord and Miller went on to direct one of the biggest blockbusters around, “The Lego Movie.”
Everyone’s back for “22 Jump Street,” and almost right off the bat, the film address the concerns that any viewer of a comedy sequel wonders: Will this just be more of the same?
The answer is yes. After going undercover to infiltrate a high school drug ring in the first movie, Jenko (Tatum) and Schmidt (Hill) are now going to college to infiltrate a drug ring. Ice Cube, returning as Captain Dickson, is a scene-stealer with a much bigger role here.
Half the jokes reiterate how it’s the same thing as last time, but the film takes this premise and runs with it, twists it, embraces it and obliterates it. And it’s hilarious. The kind of funny where your body hurts afterward.
The bromance between Jenko and Schmidt is amped up, but not without its highs and lows, just like any proper bromantic comedy.
The film has a brilliant credit sequence, where it posits future “Jump Street” sequels, and while they’re made to look insanely silly, based on how good this sequel is, I can’t help but want to see them all.
Directed by Phil Lord and Christopher Miller
Starring Channing Tatum, Jonah Hill, Ice Cube