|Review: The Inbetweeners Movie|
|Written by Cory Hazlehurst|
|Friday, 02 September 2011 08:22|
Director: Ben Palmer
There's something wonderfully retro about a film version being made of a sitcom. Of all the British sitcoms that have been transferred to the big screen, the vast majority are from the 1970s. The better ones, such as Dad’s Army, Porridge or Steptoe and Son, tended to take the form of extended episodes, featuring the characters in their normal setting.
The writers of The Inbetweeners took the other approach – as Are You Being Served? did – and took their characters on a holiday. To Malia, Crete to be precise, where the protagonists went in search of booze, sex, more booze, and “shooting clunge in a barrel”.
I’m guessing that if you watch The Inbetweeners on E4, you’ve either watched the film already or are planning to in the next few days. Chances are that the former is true: it’s already broken box office records, and at the time of writing has taken over £27m. For those who haven’t watched The Inbetweeners, it’s about four boys at sixth form college. Its combination of sex jokes and an all-too-real depiction of suburban teenage life saw it become one of E4’s most successful programmes (not a contradiction in terms).
If you're not sure whether to watch the film, you could always watch a couple of episodes on 4OD to try it out for size. Or you could just trust my judgement and give the film a watch. Crucially, the film is funny. Kevin and Perry Go Large it ain’t.
The one-liners come thick and fast (“Why should we go and look at some Greek ruins? We can see them anywhere!”) and most work well enough to keep the audience laughing constantly for 97 minutes. There are also some very funny dance routines that won’t be gracing any trendy nightclubs soon (although if there were any goodness in this world, they would).
Most of the jokes revolve around poo, or sex. Some criticise the film for including some jokes which seem quite sexist, or ill-thought out jokes about homosexuals. Except the film is about four teenage boys, who don’t generally have “progressive” views on gender or sexuality. It’s not exactly meant to be an episode of Come Dine With Me featuring Marcel Proust, Bertrand Russell, Noam Chomsky and Albert Camus (although I would watch that).
But the film sustains interest because you care about the four boys, mainly because you knew (or once were) people like them (the geek, the lovelorn one, the bullshitter and the slow, nice one) at school. The show’s writers have indicated that this will be the last time we see The Inbetweeners on screen, which makes a great deal of sense, given that the actors are now all nearer thirty than twenty. And so the film wisely shows them preparing to move on from college to university - in between the knob gags and turds, there's a bit of poignancy, showing that all the things we liked about the TV series are in the film too.
Will, Simon, Jay and Neil go larger and funnier than Kevin and Perry.
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