Jackass: The Movie Movie Review
Strictly for shallow-end-of-the-gene-pool types who find professional wrestling and monster truck shows too sophisticated for their simple-minded tastes, "Jackass: The Movie" is exactly like "Jackass" the stupid-stunts-and-practical-jokes MTV show, except that the swear words aren't bleeped out.
Sure it's funny from time to time watching Johnny Knoxville and his low-watt drinking buddies (a grunting sub-frat-boy bunch sure to be living off welfare in their parents' basements once their 15 minutes of fame is up) as they perform tailgate-surfing-caliber dares on low-grade home video. When they play demolition derby with golf carts or rollerskate in the back of a delivery van while one of them drives it around violently -- in other words when they're trying to hurt only themselves -- "Jackass" has brief moments of hilarity.
But at least half the movie consists of contemptible practical jokes played on unsuspecting innocents -- wearing old-age makeup while crashing wheelchairs in busy intersections, for example. Or taking a dump in a display toilet at a hardware store. The fact that these dimwits (and their built-in audience) find it amusing to be cruel to strangers and broadcast the acts for public consumption provides a real decline-of-Western-Civilization element to the picture.
The real jackass is any sucker who helps make these idiot daredevils rich by paying $8 or $9 to watch them set off bottle rockets from their butts, give themselves paper cuts on purpose and dance naked up against unfortunate shoppers in Tokyo who are too polite to punch them.
I can't imagine why anybody old enough to get into this movie would be interested in seeing it. But the fact that "Jackass" begins and ends with a disclaimer telling the audience not to try any of this stuff themselves says more than I ever could about the movie's target audience.
Maybe if enough of them ignore that warning, "Jackass" fans will succumb to natural selection and there won't be a "Jackass 2."
Hey, I can dream, can't I?