Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. Grandpa used a variety of camera formats to capture its material, so the quality tended to be a bit messy.
In particular, the “hidden camera” bits – which dominated the film – left it with lackluster definition much of the time. Some shots displayed pretty good clarity, but quite a few seemed moderately soft and mushy. Light signs of jaggies and shimmering appeared, and I saw mild edge haloes at times, perhaps due to attempts to bolster the sharpness of the original material. Outside of some light video artifacting in darker shots, source flaws failed to appear.
Colors went with natural tones. These consistently came across with reasonable clarity and vivacity. The hues never excelled, but they were perfectly adequate. The same went for the blacks, which seemed acceptably dark, and shadows. A few low-light sequences were somewhat thick, but these usually seemed to be fairly clear. I gave the image a “C-“ because of all the softness, but that appeared to reflect the source.
As for the DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack of Grandpa, it proved satisfactory but don’t expect a stellar soundfield. Music provided much of the audio, as songs and score offered good stereo imaging.
Otherwise general environmental information dominated. A few sequences became more active – like the bingo parlor or the strip club – but the track stayed pretty low-key most of the time. That made sense given the nature of the material.
No problems with quality emerged. Speech was natural and concise, even when recorded in potentially problematic situations. Music sounded lush and full, while effects appeared clear and accurate. The audio seemed pretty mediocre, but it suited the film.
Among the set’s extras, the biggest attraction probably comes from the presence of two versions of the film. We get the theatrical cut (1:31:54) as well as an unrated cut (1:42:13). Because the Blu-ray became my initial screening of Grandpa, I can’t detail the additions, but I wanted to mention that we get the two editions.
Under Behind the Scenes, we get eight segments with a total running time of 34 minutes, 44 seconds. In these, we hear from writer/actor Johnny Knoxville, associate producer Knate Gwaltney, segment producer Jerrod Brom and director Jeff Tremaine. In these clips, we learn how the flick’s producers set up its big gags and executed them. These tend to be pretty informative and give us a good look at the challenges involved.
Alternate Marks provides six clips that last a total of 19 minutes, 51 seconds. These show the same set-ups in the film but with different participants much of the time. Many of these fail to get the desired reactions, which actually makes them more interesting to me; it’s fun to go “behind the curtain” and view the parts of the shoot that flopped.
Three Deleted Scenes go for a total of six minutes, nine seconds. We find “Street Magician” (2:40), “Chair Kick” (1:40) and “Shopping Cart” (2:49). These offer more of the usual gags and reactions from onlookers. “Magician” is more entertaining than most due to the oddness of a guy Irving swindles; he repeatedly shouts “don’t hurt me!” for no logical reason.
A second disc gives us a DVD Copy of Grandpa. It provides only the theatrical cut and lacks the extended version of the film. Other than previews, it doesn’t present any extras.
Will fans of Jackass enjoy Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa? Probably. Will anyone else? Probably not, as it delivers little more than a collection of contrived attempts at outrageous wackiness. The Blu-ray offers spotty picture and audio, but those appear to replicate the source accurately, and it comes with a decent set of supplements. If this sort of “comedy” works for you, go for it, but Grandpa leaves me almost entirely cold.