Starring: Simon Bird, James Buckley, Blake Harrison, Joe Thomas
Directed by: Damon Beesley and Iain Morris
Synopsis: Neil, Will and Simon receive an invite from Jay to join him in Australia whilst on his gap year, who promises them it’s ”the sex capital of the world”. With their lives now rather dull compared to their hedonistic school days and legendary lads holiday, it’s an offer they can’t refuse.
Readers from outside of the UK may be forgiven for wondering what The Inbetweeners is. I have no idea if it has been a success Stateside as much as, say, The Office. But I do know that over in old Blighty it is huge. First the television series provided us with three laugh out loud seasons and then a couple of years back they transferred the success, and most of the laughs to the big screen with their first outing. Now the boys are back to remind you that, actually, your life is not too bad.
If you have seen any number of gross-out comedies of recent times featuring guys nearing their early twenties, you will probably know exactly what to expect from this film. I don’t think you need to be aux fait with the TV show in anyway, but it probably helps to have some sort of character background. To be honest though, there are enough laughs to be had whether you do or not.
The TV show was, on occasion, pretty close to the bone at times with it’s crude language, toilet humour and sex gags. It was also typically British. Despite the various lads being either arrogant, stupid, angry or a liar, we still loved them because they were real, and scarily, reminded us of ourselves at that stage in our lives. The worrying thing initially was how well it would transfer to the big screen. The first film, depicting the lads first holiday abroad, was more of the same and a total success. The second film clearly has a bigger budget (it’s in Australia after all) but still sticks to what it knows best.
Jay (James Buckley) has descended on Australia for a typical British gap year. He tells his friends Neil, Simon and Will to join him because he is up to his neck in beautiful women. They agree, only to turn up and find out that, in true Jay fashion, their friend was lying and is actually sleeping in a tent in his uncles front garden. Their adventure carries on as badly as it started and as any fan of the show will tell you, this means embarrassing liasons with girls and humiliation by just about everyone else.
There are some fantastic jokes about middle class kids going travelling and ‘keeping it real’ with a disdainful look at anyone who doesn’t grow dreadlocks, sleep in hostels and wears beads. Having been travelling myself this assessment was so painfully true that it won me over straight away. Then there are the usual poo, fart and dick jokes that any teen comedy wouldn’t be complete without nowadays. They are done in a more imaginative way than their American counterparts I think, but maybe that’s just me being British.
As far as gross out comedies go, you could find yourself in far worse company than The Inbetweeners 2, Whether it will translate to a global audience remains to be seen. One thing that is true though, you won’t look at a water park in the same way again!