It should be no surprise to anyone that the dynamic duo, hilarious tag team of Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum are back reprising their respective roles from 2012 in the appropriately titled 22 Jump Street (I’ll expand upon that more down below). I last talked about 21 Jump Street in my Blu-ray review over here in 2012 and I’m happy to report that I still have not seen a single episode from the original television series, but I’ve studied enough pop culture and seen enough comedies to pick up on references here and there. I’m smart like that, but I’m probably missing out on a few gags here or there. However, make no mistake. I wasn’t looking forward to this one very much going into it theatrically. Like the sequel to the original Hangover film I had my doubts and wondered if this second outing would simply be a cash grab with the same story, etc. set in a different locale. Even if it was, I’d probably laugh, but I’m a movie critic and I want more. I deserve more. Hear me roar! So the question that really matters is did I get what I was looking for? Check out the full 22 Jump Street Blu-ray review below to find out!
So I’ll get right to the point. Truth be told, when I first saw this at the press screening I had not laughed this hard in a theater in years. I know a lot of people will debate this point with me, but I truly thought 2013 was a very lackluster year for comedies in general. Sure you had The World’s End and This Is The End, but those weren’t really my cup of tea. I tolerated them, but I never really fully appreciated them as much as the other reviewers around here did. However, I digress. Let’s get back to why we are all here…22 Jump Street…the sequel to um…21 Jump Street. So not only did this sequel capitalize and exploit everything that made the first film so gut-bustingly funny and fresh, but also 22 Jump Street took things further, twisted plot points around a bit and became so self aware of itself that it was a complete joy to feel like you the spectator were part of the big joke. I love it when films can play out like this and ultimately succeed or should I say pay off.
I’ll skip over all the history lessons in regards to how the original film was based off the 1987 television series, yada yada yada and just cut straight to the chase dispensing only the facts in regards to this sequel. So in addition to Hill and Tatum, Ice Cube, Nick Offerman, Dave Franco and Rob Riggle all reprise their roles from the first film under the helm of directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, both of whom I make mention of over here. If you can’t tell, these guys have a definite flare and knack for their crafts. Damn straight!
The film doesn’t skip a beat as riding off their success in the conclusion of the first film we enter in the heat of pursuit with Schmidt (Hill) and Jenko (Tatum) back on the streets attempting to infiltrate and bust a narcotic drug lord by the name of Ghost (Peter Stormare). Let’s just say things don’t go as planned here (hilariously so and that’s all I’ll say) and after the failed mission Deputy Chief Hardy (Offerman) sends the duo back to the Jump Street program to work for Captain Dickson (Ice Cube). The only thing that has changed is the fact that the church, Dickson’s headquarters, is now located across the street at you guessed it…22 Jump Street! There assignment is simple, straight forward and pretty much a rehash of the first film (hence my reference to The Hangover Part II syndrome), go undercover as college students and find the supplier of a drug known as…you ready for this?…WHYPHY (pronounced as WiFi), which stands for Work Hard Yes, Play Hard Yes. Pretty original, huh? Don’t worry. It’s not all that bad as it sounds. They actually have a really cool joke in the movie that plays off the pronunciation of the drug’s name and the intelligence of one said character, which I swear I won’t say their name in efforts of not wanting to spoil and ruin any of the fun, laughter and hysteria that you’ll have and succumb to with this feature.
So as you can already guess the movie picks up its steam in Act 2 exactly like the first film did as the guys adjust to their new college dorm lifestyle (versus high school in the first film) despite the fact that you’ll hear this over and over they look older than f#$k to be college students. However, that won’t stop you from having a good time with this one as the jokes are fresh (sometimes reincarnated) and the hilarious moments are plentiful as Hill and Tatum’s chemistry just keeps on ticking no matter how many beatings they take and familiar roads they travel down. It’s almost like they were born for these roles despite Tatum once going on record in regards to his casting on the previous film saying he doesn’t think he’s funny. Well whether that’s true or not (I don’t believe so), when this duo is together the sky’s the limit to how many laughs and pant pissing moments you’ll have with them.
I guess I would have to debate the critics out there who say they found nothing new here. If you were to say nothing groundbreaking, I would agree with you, but to combat that the film pretty much points those facts out and becomes completely self aware of itself like I already mentioned above. It knows its own pitfall and traps. This kind of allows you to settle in your seat and just enjoy the film for what it is…a comedic good old time with two lads we already shared a pleasurable adventure with ac couple years ago. Now I don’t know how the loyal fans of the 1980’s television show feels about things here, but quite frankly, I don’t care. All I do care about is did I laugh my a$$ off? Well, hell yes I did! Sounds like the perfect comedy to me. What say you?
If you’re a fan of the first film, I think you’ll find what you are looking for here, familiar territory and so much more. Schmidt even gets lucky (that’s a funny twist in the story you’ll come to find out) and Jenko makes some fantastic catches and cuts on the football field and kind of scares me a bit with his closeness to one male character. Everything you want and probably so much more is right here. So come on in. Don’t be afraid. Run with me across the street to 22 Jump Street. You’ll be happy you did. Laughter is the best medicine. And you’ll get plenty of that here. Hill and Tatum have a blast with their characters and it shows. And oh yeah…I’m warning you now so you can’t say I didn’t. Don’t hit stop once the credits begin to roll.
While this is a wonky one to grade I can’t find any “significant” reason why this should be bashed at all. Let’s talk about this one in much more detail down below.
Encoding: MPEG-4 AVC
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
Clarity/Detail: Depending upon where we’re at during the film will dictate how clear and remarkable the image is (it’s the source of the problem here). Some scenes like the action prologue at the beginning of the film are a bit muted in the color department (we’ll talk a little more about this down below), and therefore detail is a bit flat, but others are razor sharp like the glorious outside sequences. When the print wants to be, things are chiseled and details like the very rich and thorough backgrounds employed throughout from the artifacts on the captain’s desk to the posters and trinkets hanging in the college dorm rooms absolutely dazzle and amaze including the individual mustache hairs above Nick Offerman’s upper lip.
Depth: I mentioned the rich and detailed backgrounds up above and that’s exactly what I’ll talk about here. Those detailed backgrounds somehow still separate themselves from the three-dimensional characters here and yield above average depth of field and that immaculate Blu-ray pop we all love to boast about.
Black Levels: Despite the differences in scenes here the black levels always remain deep and inky throughout.
Color Reproduction: I already mentioned how different scenes can be muted and murky depending upon the source and whereabouts, but this one can also amaze under the brightly lit outside sunshine days on the football field and even drooling over the vibrant, hot bikini pinks during the Spring Break scenes.
Flesh Tones: Skin tones are even and only slightly off when directly involved with the different murky source moneys I made reference to twice now up above.
Noise/Artifacts: Unless I missed something I did not notice any instances of dirt, debris or blemishes on the print of this Blu-ray presentation. Rock on!
I honestly wish that I could extend the same courtesies as I did to the video up above for this 22 Jump Street Blu-ray review, but there’s one nitpick in here I sadly can’t overlook. Read on…
Audio Format(s): English 5.1 DTS-HD MA, French (Quebec) 5.1 DTS-HD MA, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital
Subtitles: English Audio Description, French (Quebec) Audio Description, English, English SDH, Spanish, French
Dynamics: Things sound spectacular here right from the very get go while displaying the studio and production logos before the film even begins. The music throughout absolutely pumps up the jams in this 22 Jump Street Blu-ray presentation. We’ll talk more about this in the surround sound section below, but everything is healthy and invigorating throughout here with the exception, sadly, of some of the action sequences.
Low Frequency Extension: Because of the jams and tunes on display throughout here the bass is strong and remains a force to be reckoned with, however, it’s not too overpowering either. It’s well balanced. The LFE channel also gets some help from the action and explosions that transpire onscreen.
Surround Sound Presentation: For the most part the rear speakers are amazing and in overdrive here, mostly from the infectious pumped up “Spring Break” like jams, but the action sequences, well that’s a completely different story. Why the action moments, gunshots, explosions, etc., don’t infect the rear speakers the way they really should is completely beyond my comprehension. Everything else is well immersed so there’s really nothing else worth talking about here. Your rear speakers will get a great great cardio workout here.
Dialogue Reproduction: Dialogue is is mixed intelligible, clear and crisp throughout here.
Unlike most comedy releases on the Blu-ray format, Sony didn’t skimp here in the Extras section. Bonus features on the 22 Jump Street Blu-ray include a whopping total of 22 deleted and extended scenes, commentary with Directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, as well as Hill and Tatum, 5 “Line-O Rama” alternate scenes that gives audiences a look at different takes during one of the film’s funniest scenes, six all-new featurettes, a montage of jokes cut from the film, two viral videos, “Zook & McQuaid’s Football Tape” and “Jenko Split” and more! So let’s stop wasting precious time and take a closer look at everything you’ll find here!
- Audio Commentary – This audio commentary track includes Directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller and the hilarious Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum. I have to admit, this track is pretty interactive. They all seemed to have a good time with this one. I loved it when they talked about the cough in the rear speakers in the theater before it shows the Sony logo. They were not allowed to put it in the Blu-ray release because of fear that they thought people would think someone was in their house. Also of note when everyone introduced themselves Jonah said “I’m Sony” and Channing said “I’m music.”
- Deleted & Extended Scenes (HD, 39:52) – There are a total of 22 sequences to be found here with a Play All option. The following are also included with optional Director Commentary. The individual scenes are listed below.
- Prologue (2:52), Roof Dancing (1:34), Ghost Ride (1:27), Taco Street (1:18), Force Choke (1:18), Mercedes in the Library (0:37), Mr. Walters & Eric (5:10), Rooster Chips (0:39), Art Party (2:58), Delroy Has an Idea (0:38), Vietnamese Jesus (1:26), Schmidt Visits Maya (3:13), Parents Brunch (3:35), Maya, Dickson and Schmidt (2:48), Dickson Appears (1:24), McQuaid and Zook’s Football Tape (1:53), Big Dogs (1:25), Dickson’s Daughter? (0:19), Booker (2:29), Zack is Wounded (0:50), Interns vs. Mercedes (1:10) and Dickson Apologizes (2:45).
- Featurettes (HD, 50:35) – There are a total of six featurettes to be found here with an optional Play All option. They are as follows.
- The Perfect Couple of Directors (HD, 9:37) – The dynamic duo here talk about the success of the first film mixed with clips and how they first felt when talk of a sequel surfaced. The actors also chime in about how much they love working with the directors. The duo also talk about how they carefully approached making this sequel so that people did not complain it was the same as the first like The Hangover Part II was.
- Everything is Better in College (HD, 7:49) – Here we get a closer look at Jenko and Schmidt’s undercover transformation from the high school students they were in the first film to the college students they are here and how things have changed (think college drinking and whatnot).
- Janning and Chonah (HD, 7:37) – This one brilliantly observes and dives into the relationship of the film’s two stars, Tatum and Hill, and ultimately their chemistry, which in my opinion, makes this comedic movie so special.
- New Recruits: Casting 22 Jump Street (HD, 9:45) – Here we get a look at the new cast members in the film and the casting process employed.
- The Perfect Line: Ad-libbing on Set (HD, 7:09) – This one showcases the great comic actors and their improvisation in some of the film’s most memorable scenes. There’s a lot of ad-libbing going on here in this film, and in a good way! The directors say they have so much film, Michael Bay Armageddon level.
- Don’t Cut Yet: The Mr. Walters Prison Scene (HD, 8:36) — This one is completely unfiltered and takes a look at the hilarious improvisations that occurred while filming the Mr. Walters prison scene.
- Line-O-Rama (HD, 9:37) – There are a total of five sequences here that serve no other purpose other than to make you laugh and showcase different takes on the ways the actors delivered their lines during the most gut busting scenes. For some reason the one that had me in stitches the most was firstname.lastname@example.org. LOL. What does that say about me? Don’t answer that! The “Age” one below is the best in my opinion. The other ones are way too short.
- “Schmidt and Tattoo Art” (1:23)
- “Jenko and the Professor” (1:37)
- “Jenko Improv Suggestions” (1:29)
- “Mercedes on Schmidt’s Age” (4:07)
- “Mercedes and The Ghost” (1:22)
- The Dramatic Interpretation of 22 Jump Street (HD, 9:59)– A dramatic version of the film (with all jokes removed). No joke! Here’s what’s shown onscreen before you start this one up: “Because comedies often don’t translate well overseas, the directors were asked to make an alternate cut, positioning the film as a crime drama instead of a buddy comedy. Anything that could possibly be construed as funny was removed. The resulting 9 minute 30 second cut is shown here in its entirety.” So if you were to watch this one right after laughing your a$$ off at the film, you’ll have a totally different experience and may even make you laugh harder. Too funny! Haha!
- Joke-A-Palooza (HD, 5:59) – This is simply some one-liners cut from the movie.
- Zook & McQuaid’s Football Tape (HD, 2:17) – This full and unedited video (see Deleted and Extended scenes section up above) features the movie’s two primary football playing characters. You’ll understand once you see the film. I don’t want to spoil anything here when we are so close to the end of our Jump Street 22 Blu-ray review.
- Jenko Split (HD, 0:45) – Ever see the commercial with Jean Claude Van Damme doing the splits? That’s what you’re in store for here!
- Digital HD (HD) – Inside the 22 Jump Street Blu-ray package you’ll find a redemption code for an UltraViolet Digital HD version of the film. Yeah baby!
- DVD (SD) – Also inside the 22 Jump Street Blu-ray package you’ll find a Frisbee. I’m just kidding! The movie can also be played back in Standard Definition via the included DVD here that also houses a few selections as way of Extras go.
- Previews (HD, 12:13) -The following previews can be found here:
- An UltraViolet Infomercial
- The Interview
- Sex Tape on Blu-ray
- The Equalizer on Blu-ray
- Where The Game Stands Tall on Blu-ray
- Home Sweet Hey – I have never heard of this one before, but sign me up because it looks quirky like Dexter!
So as I wrap up my 194th professional Blu-ray review of my career I confidently believe that I dangerously armed you with enough ammo up above to make you realize that the 22 Jump Street Blu-ray release is a MUST-OWN comedy on the High-Definition format. I hope you can agree too. With a near-perfect audio and video presentation, a couple hours worth of special features and one hell of a kick a$$ comedy to boot I don’t think you’ll have a funner date night than this on a Tuesday night if you’d try, but don’t hold me to that either. LOL. Just obey my marching orders and BUY, BUY, BUY this one! Check out how to do so down below and thanks for reading!