21 Jump Street
Sick Obscene Humor
Release Date: March 16, 2012
Starring: Jonah Hill, Channing Tatum,
Brie Larson, Dave Franco, Rob
Riggle, Ice Cube
Audience: Teenagers and adults
Runtime: 109 minutes
Distributor: Columbia Pictures/Sony
Director: Phil Lord, Chris Miller
Executive Producer: Jonah Hill, Ezra Swerdlow,
Producer: Stephen J. Cannell, Neal H.
Writer: Michael Bacall, Jonah Hill
Address Comments To:Michael Lynton, Chief Executive Officer and Co-Chairman
Amy Pascal, Co-Chairman
Jeff Blake, Vice Chairman
Sony Pictures Entertainment
(Columbia Pictures/TriStar/Screen Gems/Affirm Films/Provident Films)
10202 West Washington Blvd.
Culver City, CA 90232-3195
Phone: (310) 244-4000
Fax: (310) 244-2626
Web Page: www.spe.sony.com/
The setup itself is funny. A nerd (Jonah Hill) and a not-too-bright football hero (Channing Tatum) graduate from high school and go into training as policemen. The nerd helps the jock pass written tests, and the jock helps the nerd get through physical training exercises. They graduate and are made partners. After making fools of themselves in their first arrest, they’re assigned to go undercover as high school students. Because they couldn’t remember their own undercover names, the jock winds up in the nerd’s classes and vice versa. This is a great set up for comedy. Unfortunately, even in the set up, the language is gutter talk and the humor is extremely disrespectful of police.
The post they’re assigned to is located at 21 Jump Street – in an old church named “The Aroma of Christ Church” turned into an undercover police headquarters. The police captain goes up to the pulpit to give a very vulgar speech to his new recruits. An electric sign behind him reads “God is Love” and a cross with an image of Jesus on it becomes the butt of several jokes. The nerd cop even gets to his knees and says a vulgar prayer while his partner laughs at him in the background.
Assigned to find the school’s drug dealer and his sources, they quickly discover the dealer is the school’s popular environmentalist. To “nail” him they are forced to buy some drugs and use them in his presence. The movie uses their resulting drug trip as an opportunity for humor. To continue their quest to catch the bad guys, the undercover policemen hold a party. They buy lots of alcohol and raid the police headquarters for marijuana and other drugs to serve their guests. The debauched party includes sex, nudity, and violence.
21 JUMP STREET is funny. It could actually do well because it provides ample entertainment value to people with very low moral standards. Sadly, 21 JUMP STREET presents a pathetic view of America’s schools and police. Teachers are involved in drug dealing and making sexual advances to students. Police are shown as crude and vulgar, as well as supplying teenagers with alcohol and drugs. 21 JUMP STREET also makes light of drug use and is laden with 201 obscenities and four profanities. The jokes making fun of Jesus and Christianity are also abhorrent.
Parents should be extremely wary because this movie will be talked about in schools. In fact, there will be peer pressure put on “Christian” teenagers to see this movie. Parents will be told, “It’s just a comedy. I don’t take it seriously. I’ll never do any of that stuff.”
The truth is there are drugs in schools. There are parties where teenagers drink, use drugs, and engage in violence. There are children killed at such parties. The author of this review knew a mother whose son was killed at such a party because the other partiers thought it was fun (when they were drunk).
This movie was made by Columbia Pictures and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM). Before the creation of the MPAA ratings system, Columbia and MGM voluntarily abided by the Motion Picture Production Code. It contained standards like:
“Illegal drug traffic must not be portrayed in such a way as to stimulate curiosity concerning the use of, or traffic in, such drugs; nor shall scenes be approved which show the use of illegal drugs, or their effects, in detail.”
“Obscenity in word, gesture, reference, song, joke or by suggestion (even when likely to be understood only by part of the audience) is forbidden.”
Columbia and MGM would never have made 21 JUMP STREET when Hollywood had these voluntary production standards.
Columbia and MGM are not sleazy independent studios. They’re two of the proudest names in the history of moviemaking. MGM made GONE WITH THE WIND, QUO VADIS, BEN HUR, KING OF KINGS and DOCTOR ZHIVAGO.
Is America better off with this comical R-rated version of 21 JUMP STREET (the original series was created by the late Stephen J. Cannell who created several entertaining, positive shows like BARETTA, THE ROCKFORD FILES, THE GREATEST AMERICAN HERO, and THE A-TEAM)? Will the world have a better opinion of Americans?
Please pray that this movie doesn’t do well. Encourage everyone who claims any respect for Jesus Christ not to support 21 JUMP STREET. We live in a free society where producers can make such movies, but we are free to encourage everyone we know to avoid buying tickets.
21 JUMP STREET is a comical version of the popular late ’80s TV show that launched Johnny Depp’s career. Regrettably, it mocks Jesus Christ and Christianity. It also presents an absolutely shameful image of both policemen and teachers. The dialogue in 21 JUMP STREET is extremely vulgar and obscene, but the movie is humorous enough that it could be popular with young people. This is a movie parents should take a stand against their children seeing, even though the humor may be popular. 21 JUMP STREET presents a pathetic view of American life. It’s abhorrent.