22 Jump Street review

Who could have guessed that doing "the same thing as last time" would be so much fun?

“Nobody gave a s**t about the Jump Street reboot… Anyone with half a brain thought it was destined to fail spectacularly. But you got lucky”. So announces Deputy Chief Hardy (Nick Offerman) as he tells officers Jenko (Channing Tatum) and Schmidt (Jonah Hill) that they're going back undercover. “Do the same thing as last time, everyone's happy.”

22 Jump Street follows closely in the footsteps of its predecessor, only this time sending its likeable heroes to college. And, as with the original, it's little more than an excuse to pastiche the conventions of the genre, in this case sequels that spend even more on doing the same thing again.

Under the stewardship of returning writer-directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller, the film is a hilarious commentary on the genre – one that manages to have its cake and eat it as it freewheels its way through zany gags and shootouts. And this time around it pushes the 'bromance' into all out romance, as Jenko and Schmidt's partnership follows the same emotional beats as that at the heart of most rom-coms.

While the self-referential gags are the movie's raison d'etre, making it work so well are its leads. Tatum and Hill have great chemistry together, seeming to feed off one another's spontaneity and comic timing. So while their bromance may only exist as part of a huge film-related in-joke, they come across as more believable and likeable than most of the characters they are parodying.

Picture: 22 Jump Street's 2.40:1-framed AVC 1080p encode is hard to fault. Detailing is refined, contrast looks very natural and blacks are deliciously deep.

Colour reproduction is arguably the most impressive aspect of the image, with Jenko's part of the drug-induced hallucination (Chapter 8) and the bright orange and blues of the American football uniforms (Chapter 11) being particularly vibrant and well-saturated. And as we've come to expect from Sony's hi-def platters, there's also no sign of banding, artefacts or any compression issues.
Picture rating: 5/5

Audio: The Blu-ray delivers a compelling DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack that works hard to get the very best out of the material on offer. Scenes such as the opening truck chase (Chapter 2) and the campus car chase (Chapter 11) deliver excellent dynamics with nifty steering around the soundstage and rich bass to underpin the action.

Elsewhere, dialogue is prioritised, ensuring that every gag gets its chance to shine. Music and atmospheric effects are also handled with aplomb. In all, it's a well-balanced mix.
Audio rating: 4/5

Extras: Filmmakers Phil Lord and Chris Miller team up with actors Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill for an entertaining commentary track that almost matches the movie in laugh-a-minute terms.

The improvisational nature of the production comes across in the collections of alternate lines and a couple of the six behind-the-scenes featurettes that the disc offers up. Also included are a bunch of 22 deleted/extended scenes and a 10-minute cut of the film with all of the jokes taken out...
Extras rating: 3.5/5

We say: The film itself is hilarious, yet this great hi-def platter deserves to be taken very seriously

22 Jump Street, Sony Pictures, All-region BD, £25 Approx