The first installment of The Inbetweeners movie had us follow four friends, Will McKenzie, Jay Cartwright, Neil Sutherland and Simon Cooper to Malia on a sun soaked holiday at the end of graduation. This time in The Inbetweeners 2 we are taken for a ride down-under.
When we are reacquainted with the lads, Simon is in a suffocating relationship with girlfriend Lucy, Will and Neil are, well Will and Neil, both still clueless and uncool. Meanwhile Jay has moved to Sydney, Australia and has developed a penchant for telling hyperbolic lies to the boys about his supposed high life down-under. So after a few calamitous events and reflections on their sad current circumstances Simon, Will and Neill decide to pack their rucksacks and fly across oceans to visit Jay. Upon arriving though, they soon discover that all was not as it seemed.
Being a citizen of this glorious sun burnt country we call Australia, I knew going into this to expect some cringe worthy and cliché jokes (much like the unfortunate Modern Family comes to Australia episode) but I thought, being a British production that perhaps the jokes in The Inbetweeners 2 would be a little more clever or sharp witted. Sadly, though the boys in this franchise have aged, there is very little progress in their circumstances and very little maturity in their humour. Writer/Directors Damon Beesley and Iain Morris rely on crude plot lines and language and dim witted lines to carry this piece but unfortunately for me these do not make for a good laugh. Perhaps the feminist in me is over forgiving characters that make fun of 'fat chicks' or reduce women to little more than sex objects, just because underneath all that toilet talk we're expected to understand that these lads do have hearts but I just don't find a bunch of boys describing in detail the lewd sex acts they would inflict on their female conquests funny.
If you like poo and penis jokes then perhaps you’ll enjoy the adolescent fare that Beesley and Morris dish up but I found most to be offensive and not for the reasons that you would expect. There are many gross out moments and one elongated scene in particular that I could barely bring myself to watch because of its vomit inducing nature. However I was happy tolerate such crude scenes if they had ended in a crescendo of hilariousness but this was not the case. It offends me that I watched something that put me off my popcorn when there was absolutely no pay off.
In hindsight the trailer below was an obvious indication of the trajectory this film would take. I guess having enjoyed the first one (even with all its crudeness) I thought this was a safe bet but looking back now the first Inbetweeners movie worked for me because whilst it revolved around a group of boys there were equally 'strong' and interesting female characters that gave the story balance. In The Inbetweeners 2 the main female characters were one dimensional caricatures; the jealous/insanely suffocating girlfriend, the good looking bimbo, the unsettled middle-aged woman going through a midlife crises.
I thought our British cousins would know by now that Australia has more to laugh at/about than Peter Andre (sorry Peter), Bogans wearing ‘wife beaters’ and Byron Bay backpackers but I guess not. This movie ultimately leans on old and lazy stereotypes and apart from a very few good laughs will probably just leave you disgusted or offended or both...oh and put you off your popcorn!