FILM: The Inbetweeers Movie
STARRING: Simon Bird, James Buckley, Blake Harrison, Joe Thomas, Emily Head, Greg Davies
DIRECTED by: Ben Palmer
RUNNING TIME: 1 hr 37 mins
“Why saying goodbye is the hardest thing!”…………..
The Inbetweeners TV show was one of the most delightful TV shows of the last decade. Not what some call an “American Pie” rip off, the show which run for three seasons on E4 was a delightful and hilarious growing up story about four teenage boys who do not quite fit in. The name of the title comes from the fact that these four are in-between the cool gang and the not so cool gang, a new group that not many notice in the corridors of school.
The horny foursome and their half hour adventures mostly contained booze, crude humour and attempted sex which often led the viewer to squirm in embarrassment at the situations that they managed to put themselves in. My DVD collection is one of my pride and joys even more so now that its announced that the show has come to an end, which is quite right of course. Like Fawlty Towers and many others, to be remembered as an all time great sitcom then you need bow out when on top and everyone involved decided to quit before the critical acclaim started to run out.
But the fan base was strong and the actors have become such great friends that they wanted to have a proper goodbye not just for themselves but also for the fans who have made them so popular in the acting world. With that in mind, the writers decided to follow the likes of many other British sitcoms (Bless This House, On The Buses) in trying their luck on the big screen and to their utter amazement, while this was created solely for the fans, the film has become a massive success that there is now a new wave of support for a possible follow up. It seems that not only as the film bought the old fans together but its also created a new set of fans and for me being one of the shows biggest and not having time to go to the cinema, I had to wait for the film to hit the DVD market and with all the hype and praise surrounding this film, I sat down tonight with a huge smile on my face that what I was about to see was going to be the funniest film of the year.
The Inbetweeners Movie starts of like the TV show, in fact its like its never been away. We start with the wally with the suitcase Will (Simon Bird) having an awkward conversation with his dad. Jay (James Buckley)- the best character- pleasuring himself with slices of ham, a snorkel and a webcam, the dimwit Neil (Blake Harrison) snogging the face of a girl he works with and of course the loved up Simon (Joe Thomas) who we meet up being dumped and heartbroken by his long time girlfriend Carli. Its also the last day of their school lives, were they finally can throw away the uniform and become adults, something most viewers can relate to.
With the promise of “sex, minge, fanny and booze” which all readers will know is from the mouth of Jay, the foursome decide to have a break away from things and they book a holiday to the sunny delights of Malia and after a very slow start in which there are hardly no laughs, the film’s change of scenery at least offers something different from the TV show but even when the lads jet down and unpack there seems something missing from the whole show!
Moving the lads away from their home town is an obvious ploy that this is a proper attempt of making the whole concept bigger and bolder, but stretching out the running time from the usual half an hour and also not seeing the usual background somehow makes the movie lose its heart. Each of the character sort of loses the sparkle that we grow accustomed too and that for me was a shame. There was also not many scenes which made me cringe, something that the TV show had me doing in nearly every episode. The dance scene of the movie which you have probably glimpsed in the trailer had me laughing out loud and I thought that it was the start of the film to kick into gear, but after that the film did not have any other scene to match that set piece.
The guys get pissed, fall out, Jay screams out the usual sexual remarks but even then you do not see any of the elaborate lies that we know he is capable of which are so outrageous that even thinking of a few now brings a smile to my face. It seems the film was purposely made to bring closure to these characters and for that we are introduced to four new characters of the female kind who as soon as they arrive on screen you know what is coming.
It may seem that I am being very negative about this film and in a way I admit I am, but I just expected a few more laughs to the whole show. At the end of the day The Inbetweeners is a comedy and over the last few years they have given me some right belly laughs but the movie is set out more like a coming of age story in which the four go from “thinking with their dicks!” to actually realising that there is more to life than just sex.
Fans who have invested in these characters may love the way the story arc goes full circle and I can see why most fans have lavished praise on this film, but perhaps I wanted to feel like I did many times before and I spent most of the time ready for the big laugh that never seemed to come. Yes I did giggle many times but I wanted more and maybe the hype and wait to watch this movie effected my judgement. I have been so looking forward to this film and knowing that this is the last time I see these characters who I really do love made me quite sad when the credits rolled for the first time.
Maybe I went in with the feeling of a jilted lover that no matter what the film offered I would never have been happy because I really did not want this to be goodbye and one scene that sums up perfectly that this is all about closure is an unexpected heart to heart between Jay and Simon which ends up with Jay realising that in a few months time all his mates will no longer be around, moved on to a new life while he is left in the same place and all alone.
The finale suggests that this is the end despite the clamour for another film and I suppose after I have rewatched season 1-3 all over again I suppose chucking on the film straight after will grade this film up a notch because saying goodbye was the hardest thing I had to do and probably and admit it was one of the reasons why I could not love this film like I wanted to.