With our four leads graduating, “The Inbetweeners Movie” is essentially “Assignment Miami Beach” to the source material’s “Police Academy,” as they celebrate by going on holiday to Spain. The idea is to “pull a few birds,” one of the more printable euphemisms the boys use in their attempted sexual conquest. Joe Thomas is Simon, the lovelorn one, unable to get over just being dumped by a girl who is very obviously a one-dimensional tramp. Simon Bird's Will is the dork virgin, an itchy sort, comfortable around approximately no one and quick with a put-down so as to not be mistaken for one of those “endearing“ nerds. James Buckley's Jay is the live-action Quagmire, a scrotum-chinned moptop scamp who will likely stoop to murder in order to toss his cookies. Rounding out the quartet is Blake Harrison's Neil, the most guileless of the group, simply because he’s by far the dimmest. Unsurprisingly, his sexual motivations are rewarded the quickest as he leaps in bed with a number of older floozies. Because being old and wanting sex is nasty!
The film (which is somehow behind only "The Full Monty" as the 2nd biggest grossing comedy of all time in Britain, and the 28th most successful film, period) shows it’s cards very early, by matching the boys up with a corresponding foursome of vacationing girls, which makes the movie’s somersaults in stretching the material to feature-length even more egregious, considering we know they’ve found their proper mates. It’s a perfect male sex comedy set-up, in that each girl has a distinct, attractive, endearing trait that makes them alluring to their male counterparts. Though the women, endlessly frustrated by these dim boys and their selfish pursuits, have no real motivation to eventually fall in their arms.
It’s clear, and it redeems a few slim sections of the film, that these four boys have solid chemistry with each other. The film trades on that common movie conceit that very close friends are still going to keep revealing secrets and motivations to each other that will seem fully surprising, though it’s mostly believable considering these are four somewhat skilled comic performers, even if, with the accents changed, their parade across Spain would be indicative of the Ugly American prototype. In other words, here’s the same slop you’ve seen before, only with brand new accents. Also, more pooping. [D+]