“22 Jump Street,” which is slated to hit theaters tomorrow, June 13, 2014, is the eagerly anticipated sequel to the surprisingly hilarious 2012 prequel, “21 Jump Street.” Audiences are well aware that comedy sequels rarely turn out well – they end up recycling the same jokes, relying on the same gags, and refurbishing the same basic plotline that entertained audiences the first time. Fortunately, “21 Jump Street” remains hilariously self-aware, and slips in dozens of jokes letting the audience know that the movie is going to be relatively similar to the first.
Director Phil Lord and Christopher Miller recognize that the first film was great and the second has to be similar enough to keep audience’s laughing, which helps keep the film feeling fresh and amusing throughout.
Tatum and Hill have stronger chemistry the second time around, which helps make the movie move along more smoothly, and Ice Cube is given a substantially larger role, which he plays incredibly. The three actors from the first movie play off each other’s strengths, and their scenes together make for the funniest scenes in the movie. Furthermore, the trio is balanced by the presence of other experienced and amusing actors, including Nick Offerman and Jillian Bell.
Although the movie has a similar plot structure to its predecessor, it takes advantage of a far more diverse cast, and Lord and Miller let the film get a bit absurd and implausible at times to keep the film from getting stale and predictable. The film isn’t quite as consistently amusing as the original film was, but it has some scenes that are funnier than any of those in the first one, which makes the viewing experience well worth the money.
“22 Jump Street” cleverly avoids some of the pitfalls other comedic sequels fall into by letting the audience know that it’s in on the joke. Moreover, by making fun of the shortcomings of other comedic sequels and letting the audience know that the new “Jump Street” is different, the film is able to take liberties that most other sequels shy away from. This allows “22 Jump Street” to differentiate itself from the prequel and it makes for a hysterical movie. For fans of the first movie, “22 Jump Street” is a must-see.