Rebels of Oz take to the big screen

Yorkshire Post - Culture & The Guide - - FILM -

of news­pa­pers. On the walls were im­ages of him­self and his past. It was re­mark­able.”

Heigh­way dis­cov­ered that her “star” was quite dif­fer­ent to the man she had an­tic­i­pated or per­ceived. She was present when the lo­cal author­ity or­dered him to strip away the dec­o­ra­tive junk that had marked out his land and property. It was, she re­calls, an in­tensely emo­tional mo­ment for a man whose ec­cen­tric­ity is matched by cre­ativ­ity.

“He lives in a car­a­van next to the house, which is a shell. All his be­long­ings are still in the house but he feels safe there, so he stays. It’s an Aladdin’s cave – an ar­ray of un­usual things. He gets quite emo­tional about it all.”

Mr Some­body? screens at Doc/Fest to­mor­row at 10.45am and on June 12 at 3.30pm. Heigh­way and Man­gle-Wurzel will take part in a Q&A fol­low­ing to­mor­row’s pre­miere. FROM nowhere he came to steal ev­ery scene as a tac­i­turn yet charis­matic tough guy, coiled like a watch­spring and ready to erupt into vi­o­lence, in 2006’s A Guide to Rec­og­niz­ing Your Saints.

Sud­denly Chan­ning Ta­tum was be­ing shoe­horned into comic-book ac­tion flicks like GI Joe, weepies such as Dear John and, most re­cently, high­oc­tane thrillers like White House Down in which his buddy in the shoot-outs and gun­play was Jamie Foxx as the US Pres­i­dent.

But who could have known that Ta­tum could dance? A gig at the Os­cars, with Ta­tum whirling Charlize Theron across the stage to an old-style tune, solved any doubts about his abil­ity as a mover.

Or that he could re­ally act? Check out the broad range of films since 2006. Or be funny? Comic tim­ing is a gift. You ei­ther have it or you don’t. And in 21 Jump Street – and, now, its se­quel 22 Jump Street – Ta­tum is part­nered with Jonah Hill who knows a thing or two about com­edy.

If Lethal Weapon, with Riggs/Mur­taugh, was ac­tion and stunts laced with com­edy then 22 Jump Street, with Sch­midt/Jenko (aka Hill and Ta­tum) is com­edy laced with ac­tion and stunts.

This sec­ond out­ing sees our ill-matched pair go­ing un­der­cover in a col­lege. But their friend­ship is tested when Sch­midt im­merses him­self in the arts and Jenko finds a new buddy on the foot­ball team.

“I’d never been in a com­edy be­fore,” re­veals Ta­tum. “I learned to trust the process. I mean, Jonah is so good, he can throw out four or five dif­fer­ent ways of say­ing a line, one right af­ter an­other. ”

In real life Ta­tum is a 6ft Ado­nis who crashed out of foot­ball in high school at the age of 19. In the film he finds him­self re­vis­it­ing his teenage years cour­tesy of a “bro­mance” with Zook (Wy­att Rus­sell), the team’s quar­ter­back.

“Zook is kind of Jenko’s man-crush,” says Ta­tum. “There are jeal­ousy is­sues im­me­di­ately and those is­sues get in the way of the case that Sch­midt and Jenko are sup­posed to be work­ing. They end up in­ves­ti­gat­ing separately.”

Part of the suc­cess of the Jump Street se­ries – an­other film must be on the cards – is that it both pays trib­ute to and sub­verts the tra­di­tional buddy movie and the dou­ble acts of Mel Gibson/Danny Glover or Will Smith/Martin Lawrence.

In fact it maybe owes more to Free­bie and the Bean and other off-kil­ter ac­tion come­dies. “When I watch an ac­tion-com­edy – like 48 Hours or Bad Boys – I want to be­lieve that those guys hang out af­ter the movie, chill­ing at the bar,” says Ta­tum. “That’s how Jonah and I are for the most part.”

And how is the body hold­ing up? Run­ning, shoot­ing and do­ing stunts is one thing, play­ing foot­ball is an­other rum­ble al­to­gether. Ta­tum smiles a wist­ful smile.

“I ended up go­ing to a small school in West Vir­ginia, played for a year, and it wasn’t what I wanted to do. So I came home and wrapped it up.”

“I hadn’t played foot­ball in 14 years,” he ex­plains. “I’ve got a torn lig­a­ment in my right foot that has be­come a chronic thing. And I rolled my an­kle two weeks into the foot­ball scenes. Even so, I loved it. It was nos­tal­gic for me to get out there and bang heads again. It was in­ter­est­ing and weird to re­live that time in my life, but also fun. If I’d ended up go­ing to that school, my par­ents would have been able to see me play. But who knows if I would be act­ing to­day?”

22 Jump Street (15) is on sat­u­ra­tion re­lease. GER­MAINE Greer will also be ap­pear­ing at Sh­effield Doc/Fest.

A new BBC Four se­ries called Bril­liant Crea­tures: The Rebels of Oz will have a live screen­ing as part of the fes­ti­val. And af­ter­wards Ger­maine Greer will be in con­ver­sa­tion with Howard Ja­cob­son.

The pro­gramme charts the rise of four Aus­tralians – Greer, hu­mourist Clive James, Bar­rie Humphries and the critic and writer Robert Hughes. This event takes place at the Cru­cible Theatre on June 10. For more in­for­ma­tion go to www. sheff­docfest.com

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