Review in a Hurry: Now more of a memory-lane trip than the anarchic shocker it used to be, Jackass celebrates its tenth anniversary with a new collection of the usual gleefully idiotic antics, augmented at times with 3-D.
The effect is like seeing that punk-rock band you used to adore moshing to in small clubs, now doing a big-arena reunion show with fireworks.
The Bigger Picture: Sooner or later, whatever it was that once horrified your parents will become commonplace. So it is with Jackass.
It's still endlessly funny to see Johnny Knoxville get rammed in the nads by a bull, or Bam Margera dumped into a pit full of snakes. And yes, it's still kinda gross to see Steve-O drink something nasty and promptly vomit. But at the same time, it's getting to the point where these guys don't look as invincible as they used to, and the viewer starts wondering how much more injury the casts' bodies can put up with.
In particular, this movie utilizes not just 3-D, but 3-D slo-mo, an effect that allows you to see moments of impact in all their glory, as faces and stomachs ripple and distort into shockwaves when hit with a fist, paintball pellet, or flying sex toy.
It's real damage being done before your eyes, and yes, you probably will laugh, but those chuckles might just be tempered with more pity this time around. If the evil genius from the Saw films were real, these guys could survive his self-mutilation traps with little difficulty.
Moments conceived specifically for 3-D are often brilliant in their stupidity, such as when a man with a gift for flatulence launches a blow dart from his rear end, or a porta-potty erupts in nasty fluids after being catapulted on a bungee cord. Less successful are bits—often in two dimensions—that play like bad sketch comedy, including a moment where Knoxville dons old-man makeup and makes out with his "granddaughter," or Wee Man stages a midget bar-fight.
Still, there's more value in slapstick such as this than some might care to admit—in many ways, these guys are direct descendents of the old-school silent comics (albeit less narratively gifted than some). For pure entertainment value, it's hard to beat seeing doofuses in marching band outfits getting repeatedly gored by an irate ram.
And don't come in late, or you'll miss a fun cameo by some special guests who also remind us of the days when MTV didn't totally suck.
The 180—a Second Opinion: We might as well just come out and say it: your love for this movie may depend considerably upon your affinity for 3-D penis.