Possible spoilers ahead!
Two years ago in “21 Jump Street,” police officers Jenko (Channing Tatum) and Schmidt (Jonah Hill) went to high school. In “22 Jump Street” the dynamic duo go undercover in college. Or as Jenko puts it: He’s “the first person in my family to pretend to go to college.”
The two investigations are so similar that Jenko, Schmidt and other characters often remark on their similarity, even mocking the fact this is a sequel to film a based on a TV show, and that nothing of consequence will likely happen in it. There are several jokes about how sequels are “always worse the second time around” but they’re always given “carte blanche” with a huge ass budget.
Yeah this is a sequel to a movie nobody expected much from, whichof course became a surprise hit. But if you think you’ve seen this already, you’re dead wrong. “22 Jump Street” is smarter, funnier, and just plain better than the original.
Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum are a brilliant comedy team. The physical differences between the tall, athletic, superhero like Jenko and the short, doughy Schmidt continues to be comedy gold. Tatum, in particular, has an uncanny ability for portraying a lovable lunkheaded.
Meanwhile Hill keeps the laughs coming as the smarter of the two, but without Tatum’s confidence. As crazy as it sounds, Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum could be this generation’s Martin and Lewis.
Ice Cube reprises his role as Hill and Tatum’s commanding officer, Captain Dickson. Ice Cube’s acting ability seems limited to smiling, and making angry faces. But in “22 Jump street” he’s part of one of the funniest sequences in the movie.
Jonah Hill’s love interest is played Amber Stevens. I thought she was very good in the role, but her character arc never really got an ending. But at least she was part of one of the funnier bits.
Meanwhile, the breakout star of the film is ” Workaholics” actress Jillian Bell. She’s a hit as Mercedes, Maya’s creepy roommate. Bells actually outshines Jonah Hill in their scenes together.
In the end, “22 Jump Street” is just plain fun. In a summer filled with big budget action sequels, “22 Jump Street” is exactly what I needed. The laughs never stop, and the action was top-notch for a comedy. Go see “22 Jump Street,” you’ll have a good time.