2012’s 21 Jump Street was a big surprise, both as a big financial hit for the studio and as a genuinely uproarious comedy. It managed to subvert the expectations of the usual reboot trend with plenty of meta humor that the film’s directors Phil Lord & Chris Miller (Clone High, Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs) expertly delivered and showed off the previously untapped comedic chops of Channing Tatum. Now it seems like Tatum and Jonah Hill are coming back to kick some ass undercover in the most creatively-titled sequel ever, 22 Jump Street.
After stopping a drug ring in a high school during the first film, police officers Morton Schmidt (Jonah Hill) and Greg Jenko (Channing Tatum) are assigned another bust. This time though, the two will have to pose as college students and attempt to join the fraternity that sparked the drug ring. Friendships will be tested, parties will be had, and their lives will be changed forever… so they’ll pretty much get the usual college experience. View the trailer below:
As a fan of the first film, I’m a bit worried based on this trailer. The opening bit with the return of Nick Offerman’s deputy character is clearly a call back to his brilliant line from the first film that showed the self aware nature 21 Jump Street was going for right from the start. However, the way it’s integrated here feels like a retread of what happened before. The same goes from many of the gags and story hints that pop up in the trailer, such as Jonah Hill buddying up with the art crowd while undercover and the wild partying in which he and Tatum participate. Based on their previous work, I still do have confidence that Phil Lord and Chris Miller will put their usual creative voices into the film and come up with new & fun situations for these characters to go through, but this initial trailer doesn’t totally sell it. Then again, I was also quite dubious that the first film would even be watchable based on some of those trailers and I was pleasantly proved wrong.
Now, there is some fun stuff about the trailer. Despite some retreading, it’s still clear that Tatum and Hill have that same chemistry from the original intact. This especially comes through in the “shut the fuck up” scene, where the two of them show that they are still on the same relative wavelength, like any good friends would be. Perhaps that chemistry will lead to different character dynamics that this trailer isn’t quite selling, but only time will tell. Plus, it’s nice to see Ice Cube, Rob Riggle and Dave Franco return. Riggle’s bit in particular had me in stitches and gave the trailer a satisfying joke to end on.
But how did you all feel? Does this look like a genuinely fun continuation of the original film or will the same jokes be recycled? Post your thoughts in the comments below.