You Should Watch Films

A celebration, meditation, rumination, and examination of the movie-going experience.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

21 Jump Street is THE New Benchmark for TV-to-Movie Adaptation

Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum star in "21 Jump Street," a film that is raunchy and completely irreverent in every sense of the word. It hits the perfect balance of being self-aware and still hitting the necessary notes for a dutiful adaptation of the show. There are cameos for the fans, and hard-hitting jokes for everyone else.

In films such as these that provide a laugh a minute, or at least try to, there are some misses. But the hits are entirely worth it. "21 Jump Street" rewards big crowds and packed theaters. Catch a late showing, and sit back. The supporting cast is great, and Michael Bacall ("Scott Pilgrim vs. the World," "Project X") has a great ear for teen dialogue and random bon mots.

Phil Lord and Chris Miller ("Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs," "Clone High") make their live-action debut and they do their fellow animator-gone-live-action compatriots proud. The film is flashy in the appropriate spots and lovingly sends up the action tropes and cop movie cliches. The less I say, the better. If you wait for a rental, at least invite as many of your pals over as possible. That said, you will not be disappointed by springing for a ticket.

(***1/2, three out of four stars)

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