Mascott’s Movie Rewind – Jackass: The Movie

Originally posted October 14th, 2010.

Alright, so right up front I’ll tell you guys that I wasn’t sure I was going to post this one. I had learned that an image + caption is a great way to tell a joke and I did that a lot in this Rewind. But the thing is that I took my own images, snapshotted from VLC Media Player, and I just do not think those images exist anymore. There is absolutely nothing I can do about this. Perhaps your imagination will do a better job of remembering these moments than I ever could?

Jackass Poster

JACKASS: THE MOVIE
2002
“DIRECTED” BY JEFF TREMAINE

NYYYYYQUIIIIL
AS FREE AS THE WIIIIIND BLOOOWS
AS FREE AS THE GRAAASS GROWWWWS
AS FREE AS THE BWUHHHHH

I suppose I should have seen it coming, but I didn’t have the foresight to take any Airborne before I went to New York Comic-Con this year. Yes, I’m dumbBecause of my lack of caution, I caught some kind of PAX Pox at NYCC, and am now paying for it through my nose. I had never taken NyQuil before, so I didn’t really know how it would affect me, but right now I am in the full swing of something and I have decided that now is a fine time to write my article for you this week.

That, and I can’t imagine that anyone has ever written a review of JACKASS: THE MOVIE while straight.

Now, this first paragraph would be where I usually sum up the plot of the first hour or so of the film. I snidely poke fun at things that might not quite make sense or oversimplify complicated situations to comic effect. JACKASS, however, has no plot. If you’re not already familiar with the television show, Jackass started in 1999 when Johnny Knoxville, at that time a struggling comedy writer, had the idea to write an article about testing self-defense devices on himself. No one would buy the idea for the article until he went to Big Brother Magazine, which is sort of like The Onion for people that get bashed in the head too often to understand satire. Jeff Tremaine, an editor at Big Brother, bought the idea and encouraged him to videotape himself being shot, along with other ideas, for his stories. Knoxville would recruit some of his friends for these videos, slowly gathering the crew for these videos, which went on the Big Brother skate DVDs. Jeff Tremaine edited together Knoxville’s videos with additional content from CKY members led by Bam Margera. MTV bought it, and it became Jackass. (This paragraph exists to explain a narrative and dammit, I was going to give one.)

Jackass, the TV show, was basically thirty minutes of largely unconnected and eclectic segments where Johnny Knoxville or a member of his crew would perform some crazy stunt where the point was either to get hurt or to annoy and confuse other people. JACKASS: THE MOVIE is that, but expanded to an hour and a half with a slightly higher budget. There is no plot, there are no characters, there is no acting – it’s just straight up mayhem.

I didn’t think about it when I was assigned the flick, but reviewing a JACKASS movie is an exercise in stupidity on the part of the reviewer. Thinking you can “review” a movie of unconnected stunts is like thinking you can review the most viewed videos on Youtube. So thank God that I don’t actually have to review movies, I just talk about them. Being stricken ever deeper into the throes of a NyQuil sleepy high has led me to the conclusion that the best way to review JACKASS is to just go over my favorite stunts.

The Rent-A-Car Demolition Derby – In this first stunt, Johnny Knoxville rents a car, races it to destruction it in a demolition derby, and attempts to return it later that day. This is, of course, much to the dismay of the rental shop owner.  The best part of this sketch is how he insists to the rental store owner that everything is fine because he returned it with a full tank of gas.

Muscle Simulators – Oh, you know nothing good is going to come from something that starts off with this –

musclestimulator e1287029568576 Mascotts Movie Rewind   Jackass: The Movie

Knoxville & Co. use a muscle stimulator to stimulate parts of their body. Parts such as –

  • Johnny Knoxville’s face
  • Dave England’s hands
  • Ehren McGhehey’s chest
  • Dave England’s “Gooch” (Described as “the spot between your balls and your butthole.” Johnny Knoxville has such a way with words.)
  • Chris Pontius’ balls.

Something that should be noted – If you’re not okay with seeing balls, then this movie isn’t for you. There are at least seven or eight separate and varied sets of cocks and/or balls that you’ll end up viewing by the end of this flick.

The Golf Cart Derby – Probably one of my favorite segments of the film, because who the hell doesn’t want to go crazy on those little carts?

jump e1287032942524 Mascotts Movie Rewind   Jackass: The Movie

They’re gonna jump the pig!

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They didn’t jump the pig.

I still kinda want to.

The Aligator Tight Rope – Steve-O attempts to walk a tight rope over a pit of aligators. Fails miserably, however does not get eaten.

steveo e1287032394417 Mascotts Movie Rewind   Jackass: The Movie

The San Francisco Treat

I actually would feel kind of bad making fun of Steve-O, because while it’s obvious that a lot of the stunts in the film were performed under the influence of A LOT of drugs, Steve-O is one of the few who has since admitted to actually having a drug problem. He’s responsible for the most self-damaging stunts in the film, usually when he was on heroin. Since then, he’s tried to come clean. Of course, he’s tried to come clean three or four times, and has failed miserably at that too, but this is his credit for trying.

The Hardware Store Dump – The first time I saw JACKASS, this was the stunt that had me laughing so hard that my stomach hurt. It starts off with Dave England explaining that he’s going to go to a hardware store and poop in one of the display toilets. On the way to the hardware store he can’t hold it in anymore and shits right there in his pants, causing one of the cameramen to vomit. (He actually throws up a couple times during the movie, repulsed by what he is filming – Did someone not clue him in?) “Later that day,” England enters the hardware store and, well –

bathroom1 e1287033905361 Mascotts Movie Rewind   Jackass: The Movie

I remain without words for this.

Riot Control Test – Johnny Knoxville volunteers to be shot by “less lethal” ammunition. He’s less than thrilled at the idea of getting shot. Before being shot, he has this look on his face that is just so layered – There’s fear, and dread and so very much regret just lovingly slathered across his face.

vlcsnap 2010 10 14 01h28m11s59 e1287034268708 Mascotts Movie Rewind   Jackass: The Movie

Fun Car Game-Spot all of the regret in Johnny Knoxville!

To his credit, he does take being shot in the stomach like an absolute champ.

Rocket Skates – Johnny Knoxville attaches bottle rockets to roller skates.

skates e1287034740141 Mascotts Movie Rewind   Jackass: The Movie

This one is actually awesome in a Wile E. Coyote kind of way.

Paper Cuts – This is the stunt that I have always had trouble watching. It’s probably the least violent or disgusting segment of the movie, but it’s the most painful.

cutstitle e1287035298218 Mascotts Movie Rewind   Jackass: The Movie

He seems so calm.

In this segment, Johnny Knoxville receives paper cuts between the webbings of his fingers and the webbings of his toes with a manila envelope. If you were profoundly disturbed by that last sentence, do not be alarmed – it only means that you are still sane. I’m re-watching the segment right now and I am twitching uncontrollably not only by the concept of having paper cuts there, but by how joyously Johnny Knoxville treats the occasion. He’s obviously inhuman. Given the choice between being shot and receiving these vicious lacerations, I wholeheartedly and readily volunteer to be shot.

BUT THAT’S NOT ALL!

Steve-O, being up on his high horse, volunteers for one more. A truly epic paper cut that would later serve as inspiration for the makeup of The Joker in THE DARK KNIGHT.

mouthcut e1287035870373 Mascotts Movie Rewind   Jackass: The Movie

I would not be able to live with myself.

This is also the segment that places JACKASS firmly in the month of horror movies, because it’s what makes it body horror. I can watch Jeff Goldblum pull off his fingernails in THE FLY to the end of days, but I will rip out my own eyebrows before I willingly watch these guys give themselves horrific paper cuts one more time.

Butthole Bottle Rocket – “Hey, can we fire a bottle rocket out of my asshole?”

rocketbutt e1287036239891 Mascotts Movie Rewind   Jackass: The Movie

“Done.”

“Hey, how about we tie a rocket to my dick?”

firstrocketdick e1287036517540 Mascotts Movie Rewind   Jackass: The Movie

“Wish granted.”

“Hey, what if we fired a bottle rocket out of MY asshole that was tied to HIS dick?”

rocketdick e1287036601844 Mascotts Movie Rewind   Jackass: The Movie

“I like the way you think!”

Butt X-Ray – The final stunt is the longest of the bunch at about ten minutes, and there’s good reason for that. Allow me introduce you to the players.

Dramatis Personæ:

A toy car – A toy car.
A condom – A condom.
Anal Lube – Everyone’s pal.

Do you know where this is going? You really shouldn’t.

carlube e1287037149584 Mascotts Movie Rewind   Jackass: The Movie

Perhaps now you have a clearer idea.

winner e1287037120199 Mascotts Movie Rewind   Jackass: The Movie

Pictured: Winner

With the toy car now lodged safely within the depths of his rectum, Ryan Dunn goes in for an X-Ray.

tell no one nurse e1287037586657 Mascotts Movie Rewind   Jackass: The Movie

Don’t let the innocent face fool you, she’s pretty sure she knows exactly what went down here.

Perhaps the highlight of this stunt is the X-Ray technician advising Dunn to never ever tell anyone what he has learned about the situation in his butt.

dont tell e1287037899208 Mascotts Movie Rewind   Jackass: The Movie

Don’t ask, don’t tell.

Ryan then performs anal surgery on himself, and removes the car from its burial chamber. Bravo, Mr. Dunn.

So why is JACKASS still important? Think back and you’ll realize that Jackass was Youtube five years before Youtube went live. It’s why all stunt videos made today are prefaced by the name of the stuntman and the name of the stunt. I don’t know if we should be thankful for that, but it was inarguably more influential than any skate DVD out there.

Favorite Part – My favorite part of the movie isn’t any particular stunt, but one exchange that happens just after the explaination of The Bungee Wedgie stunt. Jeff Tremaine, the director, and Rick Kosick, a member of the crew (who bears a striking resemblance to Micheal Moore after a year of the Subway diet) are looking over the setup, and the short conversation they have so brilliantly personifies the entire creative spirit of JACKASS that I can’t let it go unsung.

KOSICK – This isn’t gonna work!
TREMAINE –  ….It might.

Tremaine says “It might” in a curious, cautious and thoughtful way. To me he’s saying, “I just want to see what happens,” which is exactly what these guys are all about. There’s a nobility to that beyond jamming toy cars up someone’s cornhole.

THESE ARE THE MEN THAT PUT US ON THE MOON.

Most Thankful For – Helvetica.

helvetica film poster e1286981757493 Mascotts Movie Rewind   Jackass: The Movie

BEHOLD!

Every bit of text you’ll see displayed on screen is in the gentleman’s font, Helvetica. It lends a legitimacy to the film that isn’t achieved by kicking Steve-O in the balls repeatedly. (Also, HELVETICA is a great documentary.)

What Date You Should Watch This On – Avoid it as a date movie. If you’re going to watch this with a girl, it’s because it was on Comedy Central at midnight and you’re both still awake and paying attention to the television for some reason. In that case, she’ll be fine with it – But if you were to say, “Hey, come on over, we’ll watch JACKASS: THE MOVIE and drink red wine,” I would not blame her for turning down any subsequent date requests from you.

While I Was Watching This Movie, I… – was anticipating some even more cringe worthy stunts that are actually in the sequel. THANK GOD.

While I Was Writing This Article, I… – Found myself craving aspirin, despite never having filmed myself smashing my cranium into things.

Word Most Needing Synonyms – “Butthole.”

Recommended? – If you like JACKASS, you probably already know you like JACKASS. In some ways, it’s a step down from “watching people hurt themselves on Youtube” and in others it’s a big step up. The results of just taking the show and putting it on the screen are usually incredibly funny and wonderfully terrible. If you can make it through the first fifteen minutes of this film, you can certainly make it through the rest, but the R-Rated feature version of the TV show is certainly not a good way to dip your toes into the formula. Recommendation achieved.

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