The Inbetweeners Movie
Starring Simon Bird, Blake Harrison, James Buckley, Joe Thomas, Greg Davies, Emily Head
Directed by Ben Palmer
Released date August 17 2011 (UK)
November 25, 2011 (U.S.)
We all know that moment when our school life is officially over. No more teachers, no more school room politics. Real life, it is usually officially decided, is about to start and things will only get better. Many go on a lads/girls only holiday where he/she will drink/puke and definitely – finally – get laid/syphilis.
This is where we find our four heroes of The Inbetweeners Movie. Simon (Joe Thomas) has been dumped by his girlfriend Carli (Emily Head) and is in desperate need of a change of scenery. So free from the constraints of their respective creepy, obnoxious, sexy, perverted parents and scary, potentially violent teacher (Greg Davies), Simon along with Will (Simon Bird), Jay (James Buckley), and Neil (Blake Harrison) go on a “˜lads only’ holiday to the beautiful party resort of Malia.
Their hotel is a dump – the kind of place where the landlord pulls a dead dog out of the well. There are stains on the mattresses and new lifeforms growing in the fridge. Undeterred, the lads head out on the town looking for, ahem, “pussay.”
At the first bar they hit the four clueless lads set out to further tarnish the “˜Brits abroad’ name and begin to drink as much as they can afford. Here they meet a group of four girls and the bad start to the holiday gets a whole lot better. Here begins a debauched and “decadent” (the name Fernando will forever make me cringe) holiday. Everything is shown in its full, beautiful, shriveled, pukey, nutty glory.
The Inbetweeners started life as a Channel 4 sitcom about the lives of four fairly middle-class boys struggling to cope with life, school, and most importantly and frighteningly for them, girls. Embarrassment and failure loomed at every corner. The original sitcom was painfully funny: every guy has experienced a Will, Neil, Simon, or Jay moment. Whenever I watch it those hideous moments come flooding back from my school days. Looking back I can laugh at it, but I feel their pain.
Each of the four inbetweeners puts in a typically brilliant performance. Will’s voice-over narration and unease in any situation are as sarcastic and brutally funny as always. Arrogant Jay and neurotic Simon’s bullshit and bickering partnership continues to be as ridiculous as it is hilarious. But it is Harrison’s gurning Neil that steals the movie. Neil is in a constant state of blissful ignorance and enjoys every moment of life – whether it’s “feeding the horse” or smearing his face with fake tan, nothing seems to faze him.
It is by no means a perfect movie. There were some story strands which felt to me as though they had been cut too short or were just unnecessary. Adapting the sitcom to the movie format at times felt a little contrived and didn’t let the story flow in a more natural way. But, a British comedy has not made me laugh, wince and wretch so much for a long time.
After the 3rd series finished, this summer The Inbetweeners Movie brings a disgusting, hilarious, and fairly satisfying end to the story. Fans of the show will not be disappointed and newcomers might just be surprised.
Like Neil’s “˜romantic’ liaisons with a “˜senior’ lady this is not pretty and not something you would want to show your mum. But it will make you laugh and you’ll never look at a bidet in the same way again.