The Inbetweeners 2 | reviews, news & interviews
The Inbetweeners 2
The Inbetweeners 2
Poo jokes floweth over in this record-breaking comedy sequel from Damon Beesley and Iain Morris
It comes as no surprise that this sequel, based on the Channel 4 TV series of the same name, which saw four awkward male teenagers bond over their insecurities, offers little more than a shitstorm of juvenile humour and one-note female characters who are presented as objects to lust over. Lowbrow comedy doesn’t get any lower, and writers Damon Beesley and Iain Morris (who also take on directorial duties) predictably push the limits of acceptability which makes for occasionally funny viewing.
The Inbetweeners 2 offers its most laddish character and pathological liar, Jay (James Buckley), the chance to overcome his stunted attitudes towards women – even if his attempt to win back his ex-girlfriend is essentially an act of “extreme stalking”, as Will (Simon Bird), one of his companions on the long ride to the Australian outback, so rightly points out to him. Along for the trip are the pathetic Simon (Joe Thomas from Fresh Meat), and the extremely thick Neil (Blake Harrison). They bond over cruel practical jokes, vomiting sessions, near death experiences and the fact that they are all particularly awful with women.
The self-deprecating humour is laced with a mean streak due to its insistence on drawing the supporting female characters as vapid teases and psychos which seriously sullies the ensuing silliness. Extreme sports are spliced between extreme poo jokes and a minor hint of satire which involves Will taking down trust-fund travellers whilst questioning the meaning of spirituality. The gap year mind-set is the butt of many jokes. In a film which heavily relies on the posterior and the penis to set up many of its punch-lines, gross-out is stretched to its limits.
There’s also something quite depressing in the knowledge that it’s standard behaviour to denigrate the women you secretly admire as part of a pack mentality, but thankfully the writers call it out by delivering retribution via a limp slap to the face - which perfectly reflects the extent of lessons learnt by this group of friends.
This is essentially a male teen road-trip movie, with no intention to broaden its limited horizons and completely content to wade around in a swill of stupidity. Still, Simon Bird singing Roberta Flack provides one of the most pleasing and painful moments, his face stretching out to make the high notes and the insistence to let it play out a little too long ensuring full levels of cringe – even if it is borrowed from About a Boy (different song, same joke). The opening gag, with the lads imitating the Harry Potter franchise, alludes to the success of the first Inbetweeners instalment, which set the record for biggest opening weekend for a comedy in the UK. In its first day, this sequel has broken another UK box office record for the biggest opening day for a comedy.
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