The Inbetweeners: TV Times Three
There’s much to love about British comedy—they tend to take higher risks, and it yields higher rewards. The Inbetweeners is such a Britcom, having aired for three seasons and revolving around the absolutely naughty shenanigans of four school chums. Will (the nerdy, socially inept new kid—and narrator of the series), Simon (Will’s also socially inept pal, who has an eternal crush on a beauty named Carli), Neil (the dumbest, and therefore the least socially inept), and Jay (possibly the most socially inept, due to his insanely high sex drive and obscenely filthy potty mouth). It’s kind of like Freaks and Geeks—if creator Judd Apatow mind-melded with porn’s Ron Jeremy. For fans of the show, The Inbetweeners movie won’t disappoint; it’s just more of the same… times three.
It’s graduation time for the gang, and since two members are heading off to university, they’re due for one last huge blowout—one that preferably includes copious amounts of drinking, vomiting, and sexual bungholery. Simon has briefly won and lost his lifelong love Carli, and the gang is intent on wiping away his woes… so off they fly to Crete, the British bacchanalia capital, where women legendarily “get wet at the smell of sunscreen.” Naturally, upon arrival everything goes wrong: Their hotel is disgusting, the other vacationing girls hate their guts (thanks again, social ineptitude!), and Carli falls for—omigod, such a prick.
What follows is a fairly predictable series of events where the boys drink, vomit, make wildly inappropriate choices, fight amongst themselves, lose their clothing, treat the wrong people like shit, and eventually experience something akin to personal growth. In other words, as an entry in the teen sex road-trip genre, you get exactly what you expect.
There are plenty of small laughs to be had, and the acting is charming and genial across the board. Meanwhile, the inappropriateness is… well… pretty inappropriate. Unfortunately, like the series itself, it’s all too predictable: The TV sitcom template is there in full force, with each event being heartily signaled well in advance. Perhaps lovers of the show, who already adore these characters, will enjoy giving this mini-TV movie a go. For those who’ve never seen The Inbetweeners, however, it’s “teen sex romp” business as usual.