JACKASS: NUMBER TWO
***1/2 (out of 5)
September 22, 2006
Johnny Knoxville as HIMSELF
Bam Margera as HIMSELF
Steve-O as HIMSELF
Chris Pontius as HIMSELF
Preston Lacy as HIMSELF
Ryan Dunn as HIMSELF
Ehren McGhehey as HIMSELF
Jason Acuña as WEE MAN
Dave England as HIMSELF
Directed by: Jeff Tremaine
BY KEVIN CARR
Listen to Kevin’s radio review…
I’ve never been a fan of the “Jackass” television show. The first film had its moments, but it wasn’t anything great. However, there is a part of me deep down that does find this garbage funny. Does it make me less of an intelligent human being to admit that I actually liked “Jackass: Number Two”? Perhaps, but it’s hard to not laugh at the film.
In fact, I challenge people to see this film and try not to laugh. You might throw up, sure, but at least you’ll do so while you laugh.
I prefer to think of this film as karmic retribution to Johnny Knoxville for some of his movies. I happily watched him get bitten by an anaconda and thought, “Well, that’s for ‘The Dukes of Hazzard.’” And when he smashes his face in a stunt bike jump, I thought, “And that’s for ‘Daltry Calhoun.’”
When it comes to a movie like this, you can’t expect Shakespeare. Heck, you can’t even expect root beer. You should know exactly what you’re going to get when you go see this or anything “Jackass” related. The target audience will love the gross out moments – which have been stepped up considerably since the first film.
Each moronic stuntman finds his own niche. Knoxville continues to take the higher profile scenes, which often involve him flying through the air, being attacked by animals or having things hurled at his groin. Bam Margera does the mid-list stunts like having a dildo rocketed towards his naked hind end at high speed and getting fried with a cow brand on his buttocks. Miraculously, he still finds the time to torment and abuse his parents.
And Steve-O mops up the rest. He does things the others refuse, including piercing his cheek with a fishhook and diving into the Gulf of Mexico as live shark bait, giving himself a beer enema, attaching a leech to his eyeball and putting on a helmet that’s attached to a fat man’s rear so he can breathe undiluted human farts. Not surprisingly, Steve-O vomits uncontrollably in the mask when the fat man actually defecates in the tube. (Remember, this film is called “Number Two” for a reason aside from being the second film.)
What’s bizarre about the continued success of the “Jackass” projects is the fact that none of these guys are seriously hurt. They do come close, though. In the first film, Johnny Knoxville almost broke his neck in a haphazard golf cart race. In the new film, he is almost run through by a misfired rocket, and Steve-O’s leg is only inches away from becoming the lunch for a hungry mako shark. I don’t know what cosmic justice is going on in the world when Steve Irwin dies in a freak stingray attack, but the “Jackass” guys only get minor scars.
There are certain things in the actual credits I do find funny, like the fact they had a storyboard artist and production designer listed. Now, I know these folks were brought in for the staged stuff in the beginning and end, but the idea of storyboarding and production designing a “Jackass” stunt is hilarious in my book.
I’m somewhat embarrassed to admit that I actually liked this movie. Even in the midst of gross-out humor, eating feces and drinking horse semen, I found myself laughing – sometimes uncontrollably. I will hardly say that “Jackass” is worthwhile in any sense of the word, let alone say its a form of art (although if the Mapplethorpe exhibit could be, why not this?). But it is entertaining.
If there were an Academy Award for Picture Most Likely to Make an Audience Puke, then “Jackass: Number Two” would win it hands down. As strange as it sounds, this is a badge of honor for this movie.