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Jackass Number Two
When Jackass: The Movie did big numbers at the box office, it only made sense that the guys would get back together for a sequel. While spin off television shows like The Wildboyz and Viva La Bam are decent enough, the chemistry and insanity of Jackass has ensured that it's still popular even if the series itself is no longer with us. Jackass Number Two, once again directed by long time Jackass alumni Jeff Tremaine (the man behind the first film), does a great job of filling the void that has existed over the last couple of years and it delivers exactly what you'd expect from it – stupid frat boy humor and completely retarded stunts.
There's no real plot to discuss, no hidden meaning or social message to be found in the film. It's simply more footage of the crew hurting themselves and performing stunts that no one in their right mind should ever even consider attempting. The film starts off with a fun beginning where the guys are chased through a suburb by bulls to the tune of an Ennio Morricone's The Ecstasy Of Gold from The Good The Bad And The Ugly. Somehow seeing grown men getting chased by bulls to one of the most beautiful pieces of music ever composed for a film is completely appropriate. It shouldn't work, but it does (which pretty much applies to all things Jackass). Shortly after this epic, a snake bites Chris Pontius' dick which is disguised for him as a tasty mouse.
From there the audience is bombarded with one stunt or prank after another. Highlights include a fantastic bit where Knoxville is made up as an old man pretending to be hanging out and drinking with his young grandson. The reactions he gets from a few people sitting near him are pretty funny, particularly when it looks like a fight is going to break out. Spike Jonze poses as an old woman complete with fake (but very realistic looking) droopy-boobs. When he gets out of a car the door catches his dress and rips it off, exposing his wrinkled body to the people on the street. The guys go back to this bit time and again throughout the movie, and it's particularly funny to see 'naked grandma' shopping for t-shirts somewhere on the streets of Los Angeles.
Chris Pontius manages to get a fishhook through Steve-O's cheek so that he can cast him into the ocean where Manny from The Wildboyz has wrangled up some sharks for them to swim with. At one point, while Steve-O is swimming, he actually kicks a shark in the head – shortly after that he smartens up and gets back in the boat. Fire hose rodeo finds a man holding onto a blasting firehouse dangling from a ladder over a field of mud. He thrashes around uncontrollably, and when he falls off he winds up with an ugly red welt on his ass. Speaking of ugly ass, Bam Margera gets a series of penis' branded on his cheek courtesy of Ryan Dunn, while Steve-O chugs liquid out of his own ass in quite possibly the most disgusting moment out of the entire Jackass archives thus far. Ehran rides a mini-bike through a loop while Johnny Knoxville tries to drive a homemade rocket over a lake. The guys attach propulsion systems to BMX bikes and shopping carts to try and launch them over ramps while Pontius MC's in a pink track suit. Knoxville and Dunn ride 'old timey' bicycles over curbs and over jumps only to land on their faces. Look for cameos from Tony Hawk, Matt Hoffman and John Waters of all people (though considering Knoxville was in A Dirty Shame maybe it's not so odd to see him here after all).
The highlight of the movie has to be when the crew pulls a prank on an unsuspecting Ehran McGhehey who poses as a Muslim terrorist complete with a beard made out of pubic hair. His intent is to freak out a cab driver who they've called to take him to the airport, but the joke is on him when the driver (played by Jay Chandrasekhar from Super Troopers) turns out to be tougher than Ehran banked on. It's not in the least bit politically correct, but it's damn funny to watch.
Ultimately, this material is about as far away from highbrow as you can get. While there are definitely some brilliant touches here and some truly creative ideas behind the movie, the whole thing is completely dumb. The plus side, is that when dumb is done well, it can be hilarious which is definitely the case with this film. These guys aren't at all afraid to go for the gross out or to hurt themselves for out enjoyment, and hopefully they'll keep pooping, puking and bleeding on one another for a long time to come.Video:
Paramount presents the movie in its original aspect ratio of 1.78.1 and the transfer is enhanced for anamorphic sets. Picture quality is quite good considering that some of this material was shot under less than ideal conditions, and much of it was captured using handheld cameras. The opening and closing scenes, which were obviously planned with a little more detail and shot using a larger crew, do look noticeably better than the rest of the movie but nothing here looks bad at all, even the rougher snippets. Color reproduction and brightness levels are fine and if some fine detail is a little on the sketchy side, it's at least understandable why that is the case given how the movie was made.Sound:
You've got the option of enjoying the movie by way of a Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo track or a Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound track, both of which are in the film's native English with optional subtitles available in English and Spanish. Again, the opening and closing scenes prove to be better than the rest of the movie and they use the rear channels a fair bit for music and sound effects while the rest of the movie is fairly front heavy without a lot of surround activity. Dialogue stays pretty clear and there aren't any problems with hiss or distortion to complain about. The music is balanced nicely against the rest of the material and while the sound mix is hardly remarkable, it gets the job done nicely.Extras:
The first supplement is a group commentary featuring most of the cast members including Johnny Knoxville, Steve-O, Chris Pontius, Ryan Dunn, Wee Man, Preston Lacy, Dave England, Ehren McGhehey, Jeff Tremaine, and Dimitry Elyashkevich. This track is complete chaos but that doesn't stop it from being a whole lot of fun as the guys opt to basically just goof on one another and randomly comment on the on-screen action rather than sit down for a more structured talk. There's a lot of good-natured joking around in here as well as some fun, factual information. Knoxville points out how much of the material in the film seems like it would fit better with the Wildboyz series while Wee-Man discusses his bungee jump with Preston. Steve-O discusses his shark swim and they make a lot of references to earlier material such as the Party Boy bits that Pontius has done (with Knoxville remarking how buff he is now compared to how doughy he was a few years ago). This is a pretty enjoyable track, and it gets progressively more insane as it goes on.
Up next is a twenty-five minute documentary entitled The Making of Jackass Number Two which gives us a look into what went into making the picture. It begins with the typical into from Knoxville, then hits us with a montage of stunts and clips from the movie. From there the documentary takes us through the various stages of production from the first day of shooting, where the cast reunites, and then it goes on from there. Highlights here include a naked Wee-Man wandering around with a beer, an interview with director Jeff Tremaine who states that there were never any plans for a sequel and how Knoxville rallied everyone together to get the second picture going. There's some interesting footage of Pontius getting ready for the 'puppet show' skit that is seen in the picture, as well as interviews with Bam, Pontius, Steve-O, as well as a clip where Knoxville gets injured on the set. At half an hour in length, it's a pretty interesting segment that does do a good job of showing us what it was like behind the scenes of the movie while still remaining true to the spirit of Jackass.
Up next is a selection of seven Unrated Additional Segments that were not used in the movie: Bam Disclaimer (0:15, Bam comments on the inherent homosexuality that the guys are known for), The Ball Bookmark (0:54, Wee-Man slams Seamus' balls inside a heavy book), Novak Drop In (0:29, Brandon Novak skates naked and wipes out), Wee-Man And Bam Elevator Ride (0:16, Wee-Man and Bam ride an elevator completely naked), Penis Tricks (1:37, an Indian man wraps his schlong around a stick and Knoxville stands on it followed by a naked Steve-O doing flips), Preston Middle Butt (0:11, a very naked Preston flashes his ass and taint at the camera while swimming), and 90 Year Old Music Video (2:03, Knoxville and Spike, in their old people costumes, expose their testicles and withered hooters to people while singing along to Peaches' Fuck The Pain Away). You can watch these one at a time or by way of a handy 'play all' option. None of these scenes are censored or fogged, so be prepared for an onslaught of ugly man junk.
From there, we're treated to sixteen Deleted Scenes. There's 16:04 worth of footage here in total, here's what to look out for: Steve-O jumps onto some buckets and messes it up, Pontius makes Dunn take a phone call and Dunn gets his ass electrocuted, Loomis and Bam get shocked while Dunn's ass gets electrocuted again, Knoxville as an old man shows his balls on the street while feigning distress, Preston and a few others get suckered by the punching glove/note trick in the hallway of the hotel, more of Pontius the strongman ringing the bell and knocking dildos into Bam, more of Knoxville and Pontius in the ball-crawl with an anaconda and the after effects of Knoxville getting bit, far too much uncut footage from Steve-O's butt-chug stunt, some skate footage with Tony Hawk, puking with Lance Barge, clips from the puppet show skit where Pontius' mousey grows before the snake gets interested, footage of Bam eating poop, outtakes from the card throwing session with Wee-Man, a bit where Knoxville plays in the snow and the rest of the guys make a snow hill inside Bam's parents' house, a bit with Dave messing up a jump off the top of a roof and finally a clip of Bam shooting off the loading ramp in a shopping cart. There's no 'play all' option here, they all play as one big clip.
The Additional Segments section features twenty-nine unseen bits: Trash Can Pyramid (0:33, Steve-O jumps into a pyramid of trash cans), The Ding Dong (2:58, Knoxville suckers people looking through the peephole at his house with an airbag), Bellhop Cart/Flying 69 (1:38, John Waters pushes a semi-nude Pontius and Steve-O down the stairs on a Bell-Hop cart then Pontius and Bam sixty-nine!), Alaskan Wolf Trap (1:07, Steve-O messes with a wolf trap), Cow Udder (1:12, Preston lets calves suckle his fake udders), Dildo Tricks 1 (0:11, Knoxville plays with a dildo), Dildo Tricks 2 (0:20, more of the same), The Shock Phone (2:39, Bam and Steve-O get electrocuted), Party Boy Bollywood (1:20, Pontius' dance number), Wee Horse (0:11 Wee-Man and a tiny horse), Stun Gun Hot Potato (1:25, the guys play hot potato with a working stun gun), Trash Can Cymbals (1:16, Knoxville annoys people with trash can lids), Poo Piling (0:42, Steve-O gets a load of poop dumped on him), Loomis In India (0:58, Loomis wrestles a strange Indian man), 90 Year Old: Tourist Photo (0:17, Spike and Johnny poses for photos), Ugly American (0:21, Knoxville tries to hold hands with some Indian men on the street), Me Tattoo (1:17, Steve-O gets a dick-o-gram tattoo on his chest), Weiner Kite (0:50, Wee-Men flies a kite with his dick), Three Legged Dog (0:40, Ryan Dunn plays a twisted game of catch with a dog), Homemade Hang-Glider (1:07, Steve-O tries out a poorly made hang-glider to ill effect), Half Pipe Drop-In (0:17, Brandon skates into a garage door), 90 Year Old: Make Out (0:19, Spike and Johnny make out in public), 90 Year Old: Café (1:01, Knoxville accuses a street punk of grabbing Spike's breast), 90 Year Old: Hollywood Blvd (0:09, Spike asks a pedestrian if he likes sex), 90 Year Old: Ladder (1:53, Knoxville climbs as a ladder on a street wearing his revealing shorts), Lobster Claw (0:34, Steve-O and a lobster get it on), Dunn Bike Off Picnic Bench (0:08, exactly what it sounds like!), Poo Mountain (0:45, Steve-O skies a mountain made of poop) and finally, Bird Splat (0:59, a 'handicapped man' eats a dead pigeon). Again, these are available to watch separately or through the 'play all' option.
If that weren't enough, there is also a collection of Outtakes supplied here: Steve-O on the boat, Bam taking it in door number two, ramp gauntlet fun, a nasty fire hose rodeo clip, tractor tire riding, phone shocks, for Tremaine, trash can cymbals, Manny explaining what 'gay' is, Bam breaking a board, 90 year old intros, Johnny and Spike being a dirty old couple, a pissed off snake, card throwing mistakes, Preston makes Steve-O puke, and finally a few Rip Taylor green-screen bits. When it's all said and done, there's 8:06 worth of material here.
Rounding out the extra features are Pontius' Karazy music video (2:37), a theatrical trailer for the movie, two uncut VMA spots used to advertise the film, a photo gallery, trailers for other Paramount DVD releases, animated menus and chapter stops.Final Thoughts:
It's safe to say that if you enjoyed either the Jackass television show or the first film that you'll definitely dig Jackass Number Two. It's pretty hard to defend the material (and there's a lot of it here!), it really has no socially redeeming value at all, but it's even harder not to laugh at it. Highly recommended!
Ian lives in NYC with his wife where he writes for DVD Talk, runs Rock! Shock! Pop!. He likes NYC a lot, even if it is expensive and loud.