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I'm the same general age as Johnny Knoxville and remember Jackass from its modest beginnings on MTV to its numerous movie versions, and I get the understanding of making these movies; they don't cost much to make and then generate a bunch of money several times over budget. . They're also funny to a degree, which we'll get into in a second. I also get the need for Knoxville, Chris Pontius and friends to know that the bumps they take require longer and longer to recover from, so Jackass Forever attempts to bridge those two gaps.
Jeff Tremaine and Spike Jonze direct the film, put the cameramen in position for the stunts and in Tremaine's case, talk the performers into doing some of the things in the film. Compared to past films, this film introduces some new performers, including a woman (Rachel Wolfson) and someone named ‘Poopies', among several others. We see Steve-O wearing a bikini of bees, a bee-kini if you will, Knoxville gets hit by a bull, and the new guys get subjected to spiders, scorpions and generally earn their keep as part of the ‘new' crew.
There is also a substory in Jackass Forever, and it's the realization of the older Jackass guys who are under no illusions of their age. Whether it's Steve-O's teeth falling out or Knoxville's grey, the moments when the boys talk about this stuff as they head into the latter half of their lives is a potentially intriguing thing to experience, and something I would have liked to seen more of, especially as someone in this relative demographic.
A couple of flaws in Jackass Forever are that they already seemed to have that sense of melancholy addressed in Jackass 3D, and had the added benefit of including Ryan Dunn (who passed away in a 2011 car crash) and Bam Margera (who seems to have split from or was distanced by the current group, depending on who you ask). And I think the crew seems to know this too, because they don't spend much time on it, and focus on stunts that compared to past films just don't seem as funny. I'm willing to concede my general old headedness could be a factor in it, and the last film was more than a decade ago at this point, but it seems like the fourth theatrical film has covered all the ground already, and there's few places left they really can go, and it shows here.
I've watched the shows and films, and even bought the special episode that was done during the Gumball Rally a bunch of years ago now, and I'm aware that the films lose their luster with repeated viewings, so you have to enjoy the ride on that very first viewing. However, as far as Jackass films go, Forever is the most unnecessary of the bunch. With a new normal being defined post-pandemic I think Forever could have done far more with its resources, but serves to be a shoddy mishmash of things.The Blu-ray:
The 1.85:1 presentation of Jackass Forever looks excellent as you would expect. If you don't expect that, remember that they've played with various next-gen cameras in the last movie or two, and this one is no exception. Lots of slow motion that picks up a ton of detail (whether you like it or not!), lots of color that is reproduced vividly (a walking yellow fist hitting a skateboarder comes to mind, along with various clothing), and no notable and/or prolonged smearing or haloing within the image. For a movie full of poop and nudity, it looks sharp!The Sound:
DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 lossless for the film. You get broader action in larger explosions and pyrotechnics (which the opening credits reward you with), but past that, much of the film is dialogue and some 80s punk rock thrown in. Sounds clean and clear of course, as does everything else in the film. The production values for the Jackass movies have always been decent and this is no exception.The Extras:
The only extras are 16 deleted scenes (39:40) with abandoned or extended jokes, some with interviews with the participants. They're OK I guess, but I would imagine some will be saved for the inevitable Jackass 4.5 (which is apparently coming to Netflix soon). There's also a digital copy if you need it.Final Thoughts:
I have little doubt the Jackass franchise will keep going in movie theaters past the Forever installments, and the newer members of the group will turn things into their own and they will bring a new bunch of laughs. But on its own, Jackass Forever feels like an incomplete goodbye and stray thoughts by aging Gen X-ers that could have been explored more but who has time when you're getting a paintball to the yambag? Technically the disc looks great and the supplements are fine but like the film, incomplete. Go watch the last one and forget about this, forever.