Who’s In It: Johnny Knoxville, Bam Margera, Steve-O, Chris Pontius, Ryan Dunn, Preston Lacy, Dave England, Jason Acuña, Ehren McGhehey
The Basics: Johnny Knoxville and his merry band of pranksters are back at it with an assortment of stupid stunts and gross-out gags, only this time they’re doing in 3-D. Which, yes, means that all kinds of crude objects and genitalia will fly out of the screen and into your face (more on that later). The miracle of it all is that after years of harming and humiliating each other on camera, the Jackass gang is all here and all alive… and laughing their way to the bank because they’ve been handed millions of dollars to make the stupidest film trilogy ever conceived.
What’s The Deal: After a TV series, two films, and numerous spin-offs, Jackass 3D offers more of the same – skits, inane pranks, or physical challenges – and finds each member of this demented daredevil team settled into his or her area of expertise. Knoxville, it seems, puts himself in harm’s way with glee; Steve-O’s special power is his ability to ingest and be covered in disgusting substances. The only truly new element here is the use of 3-D, which occasionally brings various stunts leaping off the screen and into your lap, whether you like it or not. At best, this added dimension enhances pieces like the film’s celebratory opening, a series of gloriously operatic and even gorgeous instances of people being assaulted in slow motion with wet fishes/boxing gloves/paintballs. You still admire the guts it takes to pull off these shenanigans, even if the shtick has gotten repetitive.
Who And What You Fear For The Most: The bodily harm suffered and risked by most of the performers has always been alarming, but as they grow older it gets harder to chalk it up to youthful idiocy. Head trauma, goring, internal bleeding, and more are probably being suffered on-screen, but the filmmakers decide not to address potential injury. More alarming than the elective risks the Jackass guys pose to themselves and each other is the acknowledgment that not all of the stunts involving animals were monitored for safety, leaving one wondering how many bees were swatted to death and snakes accidentally crushed for the sake of a laugh.
If It Really Cost Millions, What They Probably Spent All That Money On: Health insurance, life insurance, damage fees, legal counsel, rubber snakes, jet skis, paintball guns, animal wranglers, industrial cleaner, whatever it took to rig a Port-o-Potty into a giant poop slingshot, wet naps, therapy.
What Looks Amazing In Slo-Mo/3-D: Paintballs on a human torso, confetti showers, flying spittle, Chris Pontius in a bikini top and bunny ears, the “shaky-face” effect of someone being punched in slo-mo; and something involving genitals, a piece of string, and a remote controlled helicopter.
Things In Jackass 3D That Still Aren’t As Bad As the Worst Gross-Out Gag In The Film: Farting, feces, urine, vomit, and incest jokes. Incredibly enough, there’s something worse than all of the above. Enjoy at your own risk.