Is popular culture like a river, flowing relentlessly forward so that no one ever steps in the same waters twice? Or is it like a coral reef — or, maybe, a landfill — brought out of the accelerating accretion of new matter? If two wildly dissimilar objects have the same name, does it make any sense to compare them? If so, how? Please forgive these questions’ philosophical tenor: I’ve just watched 21 Jump Street full movie online and it has left me in a ruminating mood.
Not that 21 Jump Street full movie, directed by Phil Lord and Christopher Miller and based on the semi-beloved, dimly recalled Fox cop show that made Johnny Depp a star in the late 1980s 21 Jump Street movie, aims to be thought-provoking. It wants to be exciting and, to a probably unexpected extent, it is. Largely forsaking the sweet multiculturalism of the original for white-dude bromance, and completely abandoning earnest teenagers-in-crisis melodrama in favor of crude, aggressive comedy, this 21 Jump Street 720p full movie is an example of how formula-driven entertainment can succeed.
It is full of the usual boy-comedy stuff: homophobic humor so blatant that it must be making fun of homophobia (right?); easy, knowing sendups of movie and television clichés; appearances by actors from your favorite sitcoms (assuming you like “The Office,” “Parks and Recreation” and “New Girl”); exploding cars; a joke about “Glee.” And even though no conceptual ground is broken that wasn’t already trampled and scorched in the Harold and Kumar films (to cite solely the three most refined examples), the entire mess is ridiculous, spirited and, yes, smart enough to work.
Two high school classmates — an alpha dog named Jenko (Channing Tatum) and a loser-nerd named Schmidt (Jonah Hill) — cross paths again at the police academy, where their friendship bridges the gulf of coolness. Their amazing incompetence and pure inexperience put them in an undercover mission run out of an abandoned church by an angry captain played by Ice Cube, also heard on the soundtrack delivering a rather critical perspective of law enforcement in a vintage song by his former group N.W.A.
The placing of the middle-aged Ice Cube as a foulmouthed cop with the young Ice Cube as a foulmouthed cop hater represents the film’s playful, grab-bag concept of itself. There are some obligatory ’80s and early-’90s references, and cameos from some of the old 21 Jump Street movie cast members, but ancient Generation X nostalgists may be let-down, which turns out to be a good thing.
Jenko and Schmidt suffer their own micro-generational replacement, which is much more amusing than big shoulder pads, shaggy mullets or acid-washed denim. Brought back to high school, where they disguise as students, these 20-somethings are shocked to realize how much has changed since 2005. Everybody texts, and the old social orders appear to have broken down. Kids these days are so tolerant and sensitive and environmentally conscious, Jenko notes, with some dismay. “I blame ‘Glee,’ ” he says.
There is, certainly, a genetic connection between that show and this film. On TV 21 Jump Street full movie was an hour long youth-targeted Fox prime-time offering that mixed whimsy, emotion and public-service-announcement sobriety as it confronted social ills like bullying, bigotry and drug abuse. The movie takes aggressive sarcastic aim at exactly this sort of piety without risking true offensiveness. Among the baddies, for example, is a clique of diverse, eloquent, college-bound, ecology-minded teenagers, led by Eric (Dave Franco), whose very existence destroys the categories Schmidt and Jenko rely on and who are also dealing dangerous drugs.
Eventually action-movie police work overwhelms high-school high jinks, which is too bad, since Mr. Lord and Mr. Miller (who previously directed the chaotic animated children’s film “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs”) show no particular distinction in setting up chases and shootouts. The real energy in the movie is provided by Mr. Hill and Mr. Tatum, who fulfill and reverse their buddy-movie stereotypes at the same time.
Thanks to the insane, upside-down world of 2012, as well as a clerical mix-up, Schmidt joins the cast as the big shot — with an only merely inappropriate romantic possibility portrayed by Brie Larson — while the beefy, bull-necked Jenko is banished to the world of wonks and dweebs. This may not be a horrible new idea, but the two lead actors are meticulous and unembarrassable enough to render the identity confusion interesting and even, at times, touching.
21 Jump Street movie free makes a virtue of its own lack of freshness, raveling in its silly gags and retrograde attitudes — in 2012 women can really be funny, guys! — with such unaffected abundance that you may find yourself not only tickled, but also mesmerized.