I think that the British (original) version of The Inbetweeners is a terribly funny television show. It is raunchy and it is foul and it is awkward. It is everything a comedy about some unfortunate high school boys should be. What does such a show do though when the kids are no longer in high school? Naturally, they make a movie. As much as I love the television show, The Inbetweeners Movie isn't everything it should be.
The Inbetweeners Movie, directed by Ben Palmer and written by Iain Morris and Damon Beesley (Morris and Beesley were the men behind the series with Palmer directing a number of episodes), simply feels like a long episode of the series and not particularly movie worthy. While there's nothing immensely wrong with that, it's not a particularly great long episode, and that is an issue.
The film stars, just as the series did, Simon Bird, James Buckley, Blake Harrison, and Joe Thomas with a number of the show's other stars also putting in appearances. In short, they put the band back together for the movie. Maybe that's the problem, maybe no one was there to tell everyone that they had to come up with something really good and potentially different and so they opted to deliver the same old-same old again.
Starting at the beginning, if you're not a fan of the television series from whence this movie sprang, don't bother with the film itself. While you will understand the simplistic plot, you're not going to get much of a flavor here for who these characters are, the movie assumes a lot of foreknowledge.
Most plainly, this issue exists with Simon (Cooper) and his insane love for Carli (Emily Head). Much of the film in fact revolves around Simon pining for Carli and while it is easy enough for anyone to understand boys obsessing about girls, it really is only interesting to watch Simon obsess over Carli if one knows about Simon's previously obsessing over Carli. Additionally, the whole movie only takes place because of Simon's obsessing over Carli; it is why these four recent high school grads go to Malia (it's on Crete) in the first place.
The plot here, as stated, is simple to understand (it's the kind of thing you might see on a none-too-deep sitcom for example) – four awkward kids who are obsessed with sex graduate high school and go away to a tropical paradise for a week. The young lads (they're British, so they're lads) quickly realize that they are just as awkward and bad with girls in a foreign land (particularly one populated with British people doing the exact same thing they're doing) as they are at home. But, that doesn't stop their alcohol-fueled shenanigans.