21 and Over Blu-ray Review
The biggest problem with 21 AND OVER is that we’ve seen it before. THE HANGOVER, PROJECT X and other similarly themed films have touched on the idea of a group of friends partying too hard and getting into various shenanigans. So the ideas explored in 21 AND OVER aren’t enough to carry the film and therefore, the film has to reach new levels of hilarity and outrageousness in order to break new ground in what’s becoming a very tired genre. Unfortunately, it doesn’t and the result is a tired film that has a few highlights sprinkled throughout an otherwise predictable film.
Miller (Miles Teller) and Casey (Skylar Astin) are surprising their high school best friend Jeff Chang (Justin Chon) on the night of his 21st birthday. Jeff doesn’t want to go out and get wasted because he has an important job interview the next morning, but of course he succumbs to the pressure and the three of them go off to the bars. Predictably, Jeff gets plastered pretty quickly and pretty soon, Miller and Casey are stuck trying to get him home. The problem is, they don’t remember where he lives and the rest of the film revolves around the various missteps they make on their journey to Jeff’s house.
We have some subplots along the way as well. Miller and Casey haven’t seen each other for a while and have drifted apart, Casey meets and falls for a girl they come across early on, Miller angers a group of bullies and Jeff’s dad is controlling and demanding. But even with the subplots, we still don’t venture into uncharted waters and the case can be made that every aspect of the film is pulled from a better film that came before it. We also get a lot of laughs that don’t work very well for anyone over 21. The scene with Miller and Casey getting punished and anything involving the bullies seemed forced an unnatural in the course of the film.
The film succeeds with its two leads, Miles Teller and Skylar Astin. Teller is basically reprising his role of Willard from the FOOTLOOSE remake, but I like the guy and he gets a chance to shine in this. Astin also holds his own in the film and does well with a bigger part after breaking out in PITCH PERFECT. Their chemistry and repertoire definitely makes the film more enjoyable.
Despite the lack of originality and the overall familiarity with the film, 21 AND OVER might be worthy of a Friday night viewing for a younger crowd. The performances from Teller and Astin are good enough to keep the film going and the short runtime prevents the film from dragging on. Just don’t expect anything you haven’t seen before.
21 AND OVER BLU-RAY REVIEW
Video: 21 AND OVER looks beautiful on this Blu-ray release. Most of the film takes place at night, but the video is crisp and clear, even with some bad lighting.
Audio: The film has a nice soundtrack to accompany its great video.
Levels of Intoxication (3:49): This is a brief featurette chronicling Jeff Chang’s drunkenness throughout the film.
Tower of Power (3:07): Another short featurette taking you through the Tower of Power that Miller and Casey encountered at the frat party.
Gag Reel (2:24): The cast flub their lines and laugh about it.