The Inbetweeners 2 (2014)

Inbetweeners 2 Movie Poster.jpgSequel Friend

Directors: Damon Beesley, Iain Morris
Running Time: 96 Minutes
Starring: Simon Bird, Joe Thomas, James Buckley, Blake Harrison

After proclaiming 2011's The Inbetweeners Movie would be the last onscreen appearance of this lovable quartet of British characters, the creations of Damon Beesley and Iain Morris have returned after 3 years to see the boys taking a backpacking trip in Australia.

It's understandable to view this with cynical eyes, and see it as a cash grab attempt, but the truth is that the film is anything but that. Beesley and Morris' script brings a plethora of laughs to the proceedings, with moments doing greatly to remind the viewers of why they fell in love with the Channel 4 show in the first place. One particular scene at a water park will especially have audiences laughing out loud, and remembering it fondly alongside other gems from the series.

But it serves to the writers credit that they don't solely focus on the laughs, including many scenes that gets to the heart of these characters and their friendship. Jay's need to constantly lie is given a focus, as we see it's his method of coping with heartbreak and having a family that always belittle and humiliate him.

Will regrets leaving his laptop unlocked

The four main characters all feel comfortable in their roles, as you can see they each know their character and their relationships well, inside and out. One scene in particular is worth mentioning, as Will begins a typical Hollywood apology scene to his friends, when Neil interrupts him with a callback to a running gag. The looks shared by the actors says a lot more about their friendship than any clichéd speech could have, and is a perfect testament to how good friends this lot really are.

But there a number of problems to address. The moments of humor don't always land, with a couple of points feeling more awkward to watch than funny. Also, for a show (and a first film) which had many moments that felt realistic and relatable to viewers, there are a few parts which seem out of place, and forced for the sake of this being a film. Plus, the climax reaches an abrupt note, with a couple of resolutions coming about in an unsatisfying manner.

The Inbetweeners 2 is far from the unfunny cash-grab which the trailers seemed to suggest, instead marking a welcome return (and possibly exit) for this lovable group.