Jackass 3 has broken all kinds of records, not just for the biggest October opening, but also for being the first movie I’ve seen in the theater since Deep Blue Sea (1999) and the first 3D movie that didn’t need red and blue glasses. If ever there was a movie made for 3D, it’s Jackass.
However, there’s a great introduction by the original jackasses, Beavis and Butthead, that masterfully lowers expectations. Butthead demonstrates 3D technology by punching Beavis in the face but he’s not the only one that gets tricked.
Scenes like Johnny Knoxville jet skiing toward the camera should look amazing, but instead the camera quickly cuts to a shot from behind and all we see is Knoxville vanish behind some bushes. Other than the titles, the only notable 3D is the handful of CG (read: fake) bees during Beehive Tetherball.
While the 3D fell flat, the slow motion was outstanding. It beautifully captured each and every painful moment. Every time someone gets hit in the face, which is a lot, you can see the impact ripple across their face. Slow motion is a double-edge sword though, as it extends some very uncomfortable scenes for the audience.
The production company certainly lived up to its name. In one of many phallic pranks, Bam sneaks up on people and pisses on them. The scary thing is that it’s shot from 1st penis perspective like some kind of perverted Halloween homage. Later, the guys play some stickball. Unfortunately, they were forgot their equipment so they improvise and use Pontius’ dick as a bat and Bam’s mouth as the catcher’s mitt. Despite being in slow motion, the black censor bar that conceals Pontius Jr is comically unable to keep up and we witness Party Boy in all his glory.
What should have been censored is the feces, which was literally everywhere. Steve-O gets bathed in it when he goes bungee jumping in a port-a-potty! But quantity isn’t everything. Dave England sets a new high for potty humor when he paints his ass like a volcano and erupts. And just when you think it’s over… instant replay!
It’s not all obscene though. After all, they needed material for the trailer. Most of the skits are boring, with the exception of a midget bar fight that even your mom would enjoy.
But the staple of the show has always been dangerously stupid stunts and Jackass 3D delivers with Electric Avenue, where prisoners try to gain their freedom by crossing an obstacle course consisting of 15 stun guns (950,000 volts each) plus 4 cattle prods. You can literally see the fear in their eyes, and if they’re scared your scared. Afterwards Bam said, “I changed my mind. Stun guns are the number one most thing that I hate now. Bulls are second. Snakes are third.” Naturally, Knoxville decided to test that by trapping him in a snake pit, where he bawled like a baby.
There’s explosive ending where everything (and I mean everything) blows up. Some of it’s obviously fake but that doesn’t make it any less impressive.
Director Jeff Tremaine says this is the last Jackass movie, maybe. “We truly made it as if it’s the end but we also made the other two movies as if those were the last, so it’s getting pretty repetitious to be here three years after the last time, you know,” said Tremaine.
The credits seem to support this. An emotional remix of Weezer’s “Memories” (Featuring The Cast Of Jackass) accompanies old footage and endearing family photos from before they were jackasses. Knoxville and his cohorts bellow out the chorus, which just makes you want to join in with them. It makes the original version sound empty and whiny in comparison. In one of the last clips, Wee Man is asked if it’s over to which he responds, “Yeah, what did you want out of it? You got whatever, you know.” Although he’s referring to a stunt, it’s extremely poignant. I never thought I’d get misty-eyed over some guys who hit each other in the crotch.
Don’t worry though, just like the previous movie there was plenty of unused footage, which will be used for a direct-to-DVD sequel: Jackass 3.5.