21 Jump Street

Film Review by Keir Roper-Caldbeck | 27 Jun 2012
Film title: 21 Jump Street
Director: Phil Lord, Chris Miller
Starring: Jonah Hill, Channing Tatum, Ice Cube
Release date: 9 Jul
Certificate: 15

I had a dream. Not the usual one where I'm sent back to school with – for an unexplained but apparently plausible reason – no clothes on. No, this one promised to be a real nightmare. I dreamed that desperate Hollywood producers had turned a rubbish, all-but-forgotten TV series about cops sent undercover into high school into a gross out comedy. But – and this is where the dream turns really weird – it turned out to be pretty good. It was funny.

There's so much about 21 Jump Street that could have gone wrong, but directors Lord and Miller are careful to keep the focus on their main characters while letting the gags flow. A slimmed-down Jonah Hill does his usual nervy shtick, while Channing Tatum reveals a decent gift for comedy first hinted at in the otherwise execrable The Dilemma. Ever reliable is Ice Cube as their always angry police captain: "Teenage the fuck up!" [Keir Roper-Caldbeck]