21 Jump Street DVD Review

And they say jump.

At least David Bowie does, and if it’s good enough for the thin white duke then it’s good enough for me.

So an eighties american cop show most famous for being Johnny Depp’s first step towards Hollywood stardom jumped back to the modern day this year.

Writer Michael Bacall’s cinematic incarnation of 21 Jump Street may or may not be a faithful interpretation of this supposedly classic franchise.

If I was any sort of proper critic, or man even, I’d have doubtless done some proper research into this so I could bring you the answer.

But I’m afraid I’m neither, which means you’ll just have to go elsewhere for this particular answer.

Please don’t go elsewhere for this particular answer.

What I do know is that 21 Jump Street feels like ten pounds of fun in a five pound bag.

Whatever that means.

Jenko and Schmidt are the unoriginal odd couple; back in high school, one was a jock and the other really wasn’t, but its ok because Schmidt could make up for this with his book smarts and bona fide slim shady hairstyle.

And if you’re too young to know who the real slim shady is, I suggest you actually do leave this website.

Like right now.

Anyway, despite their different high school experiences, both Jenko and Schmidt end it on a similarly downbeat note and decide that becoming a police officer is the best thing for them to do.

As fortune would have it, they both end up enrolling in a local police force and, free from the repressive cliques that blight american school hallways, Jenko and Schmidt swiftly become firm friends as both excel where the other is weak.

Between them, they might even make one decent policeman; as soon as they remember the miranda rights they’re supposed to read to their perps before arresting them of course.

Embarrassed by their high school errors, their precinct decides to send these two rookies to an undercover drugs unit where their particular Justin Bieber skillsets might fit right in.

21 Jump Street is a smart take on a couple of oft tired american film staples, namely the buddy cop movie and high school comedy.

It’s not the most original of scripts, relying instead on poking fun at our expectations of these two particular genres, but it does this well.

And matching the eminently likable Channing Tatum with Jonah Hill, as Jenko and Schmidt respectively, ensures you’ll stay engaged in the happy nonsense 21 Jump Street peddles right to the end.

There are plenty of familiar faces on show too, with Ice Cube playing to type as Dickson, the angry, black Police Captain. Brie Larson is the cool girl at school for Schmidt to work out his own teenage regrets on and there a few more famous faces that’ll bring a smile to your face by the end.

21 Jump Street won’t win any prestigious awards for its ground breaking material, or lack there of, but it is a lot of fun.

And if that was enough for Bowie to don fancy dress most of his adult life, it’s enough for me to enjoy this good natured romp too.

Jonathan Campbell

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July 2012
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