It’s no secret that movie theaters have been in flux over the past few years. With the pandemic surging multiple times and streaming services continuing to ramp up in quantity and quality, it’s become harder to entice the average viewer to spend a couple hours in a theater compared to on their couch. But every so often a film comes along that bucks that trend and gets people to go out. Most of the time, those films are either comic book films or horror films. This time, however, it’s the return of a group of stuntmen.
Listen, I’m a simple man. I have simple pleasures. Sitting in a theater practically dying of laughter over watching grown men dying of laughter because their friend came face-to-face with a bear is one of those pleasures. “Jackass Forever” is a perfect return to the big screen for these wild personalities.
Reunions and reboots are being forced upon us nowadays. Shows and movies that have no business resurfacing are doing so at an alarming rate. “Jackass Forever” does it so seamlessly and effortlessly. Johnny Knoxville and Steve-O are approaching the age, or have already passed it, where stunts like these aren’t possible, but they’re determined to go out with one last charade.
Unfortunately, not every original cast member is able to take part in the latest outing. Most notably Ryan Dunn, whom the film is dedicated to after his passing in 2011, and Bam Margera. These two gave their stunts a hardcore edge. They felt more metal than the rest of the group (who deliver a more punk and skateboard-heavy tone). It can feel at times that the newest iteration is missing that edge, but the group does a commendable job at trying to fill those gaps with new talent.
The biggest newcomers to the group are three officially announced members of the cast: Jasper, Rachel Wolfson and Sean “Poopies” McInerney. Jasper brings along his father and fellow Odd Future members for a few stunts, all of which are bring-you-to-tears funny, and Rachel Wolfson and Poopies bring a real “Johnny Knoxville” vibe where the only thing that matters during the stunts is getting the footage. Eric Andre, Machine Gun Kelly, and Tyler, the Creator all make effective appearances as well.
It may not have the same lightening in a bottle tone that the original film had, and it may not be as dangerous and as scary as the second, but it matches up well with each of the previous installments of the franchise. What you’re expecting to get out of a Jackass movie, you will definitely get in “Jackass Forever.”
Every original cast member brings their A-game, but the MVP of “Jackass Forever” has to be Ehren McGhehey. Off the top of my head without writing notes, I can easily remember him having to test a nut cup out three times, get bitten by a tarantula, tased multiple times, and restrained with a bear in his face. A really great playoff performance by Danger Ehren in this one.
“Jackass 3D” felt like a celebration of the franchise. It’s got a real “this might be the last time we actually get to do this” quality to it. I was worried that this might be a passing of the torch film, but instead it felt like they ushered in a new era. Knoxville, Steve-O, Pontius, and the other older cast members may not always be able to take the beating they used to, but they’ll always have a hand in it. As long as they have a couple younger punching bags, they’ll be able to show up on set and give audiences what they want.
‘Jackass Forever’ Verdict
“Jackass Forever” gets two thumbs up from me. I loved it and I’m sure it’ll be one of the best theater experiences of the year. It’s another blockbuster hit from the franchise and it most likely won’t be the last. With that being said, the crew has earned a few years to go home and lick their wounds before returning.