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21 Jump Street

March 28, 2012

21 Jump Street may be a remake but it feels experimental like Anchorman. It is incredibly quotable and is loaded with a hilarious ensemble. 21 Jump Street puts the filmmaking world on notice that reboots do not have to be familiar. Normally, I’d fight against remakes but if you are going to make one they should all be like this.

The reason this film works is because it is aware of its remake roots and it boasts a hilarious performance by Channing Tatum. You really like the dude. I’ve expected that he is a good actor after recent turns in The Eagle, The Dilemma and Haywire. The directors and producer Jonah Hill make great use of Tatum. The not so slim Shady and Jenko the jock provide a fun team you want to see more of.

Channing is dumb and Hill is smart. Together they make a fun comedic team that infiltrates a high school in search of a fatal drug. They quickly find the cool kid drug dealers who are led by eco-friendly Dave Franco.

The two cops report to the admittedly angry/stereotypical African American captain played by a snarling/sassy sandwich eating Ice Cube.

What I love is that Hill becomes the popular kid and Tatum is the loser. The roles reserve and this allows the two to discover interesting things about themselves. They figure out that teachers are amazed at Tatum’s muscles and Hill can sing a swell Peter Pan jam. Along the way the two throw a gnarly party, engage in gun fights, flirt with 18 year olds and witness a massive, unexpected and hilarious explosion.

21 Jump Street deserves it’s 85% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and is proving to be a big box office draw. This makes me happy because we can expect a second time around with characters we like.

Go watch 21 Jump Street. Laugh, quote and realize that people have the right to be lawyers.

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