DVD Movie Guide @ dvdmg.com
Review Archive:  # | A-C | D-F | G-I | J-L | M-O | P-R | S-U | V-Z | Viewer Ratings | Main

Johnny Knoxville and his crew of crazies take the concept of the MTV show "Jackass" - a bunch of guys doing dangerous and disturbing stunts just to see what happens - and turns it into a movie, where they can get away with more than they could on TV, including a climactic stunt of immense insanity.

Jeff Tremaine
Johnny Knoxville, Bam Margera, Chris Pontius, Steve-O, Dave England, Ryan Dunn, Jason Acuna
Writing Credits:
Jeff Tremaine, Spike Jonze

Do not attempt this at home
Box Office:
Budget $5 million.
Opening weekend $22.763 million on 2509 screens.
Domestic gross $64.267 million.
Rated R for dangerous, sometimes extremely crude stunts, language and nudity.

Widescreen 1.85:1/16x9
English Dolby Digital 5.1
English Dolby Surround

Runtime: 84 min.
Price: $29.99
Release Date: 3/25/2003

• Commentary by star Johnny Knoxville, director Jeff Tremaine and cinematographer Dimitry Elyashkevich
• Commentary by the cast
• Theatrical trailer
• MTV's making of the movie
• 27 additional minutes of footage
• Outakes
• The Music Video For "If Your're Gonna Be Dumb" By Roger Alan Wade and "We Want Fun" By Andrew W.K.
• Promo Spots
• Photo and Poster Galleries

Compare DVD Prices
Search Titles:

TV - Mitsubishi CS-32310 32"; Subwoofer - JBL PB12; DVD Player - Toshiba SD-4700; Receiver - Sony STR-DE845; Center - Polk Audio CS175i; Front Channels - Polk Audio; Rear Channels - Polk Audio.


[an error occurred while processing this directive]

Jackass: The Movie (2002)

Reviewed by David Williams (March 24, 2003)

It would go against the better judgment of any “legit” movie reviewer to give a glowing review to a film like Jackass. I think a good review from them for a film like this would be nothing short of career suicide - I mean, many of these guys are the same people that cast Oscar votes for goodness sakes! However, I’m not part of the very small fraternity of “professional” reviewers and I do it because I love it – and while it doesn’t pay the rent or put food on my table, it does keep my DVD collection quite sweet. Even so, I’ve got no problem admitting that I LOVED THIS FILM! It’s everything I thought it would be and was easily the funniest, laugh-per-minute film from 2002.

While the film went largely ignored by critics, fans didn’t seem to care and turned out in droves, as the $5 million dollar budget Jackass: The Movie was given had a tidy little return of over $64 million. For those keeping score at home – that’s well over 10 times a return on Paramount’s initial investment! Not too bad for a bunch of jackasses … I could name a dozen major stars who have had films with budgets as large as Jackass’ total box office take with box office returns that couldn’t even cover the budget. Again, not too shabby – regardless of what you think about Johnny Knoxville and his crew.

In order to give the uninformed some background on the show, let me simply rehash portions of my previous DVDMG review from Jackass: Volumes 2 & 3.

Much to the mortification of parents with stupid children everywhere, the show premiered in 2000 on MTV after a negotiations war between the network and Comedy Central. Created by Johnny Knoxville, a writer for the Larry Flynt-owned skateboarding magazine, “Big Brother”, he can be credited with show’s premise. He quickly became an underground icon, as he was convinced by his editor, Jeff Tremaine (now executive producer and co-creator of Jackass), to videotape himself product-testing things like bulletproof vests, stun guns, and pepper spray. These videotaped stunts led to more asinine stunts and eventually, a trilogy of tapes were released glorifying Knoxville’s stunts and strangely enough, he found himself in high demand.

After Knoxville sorted through some rather lucrative offers and eventually decided on MTV, the network came up with the idea of Jackass. The show would give Knoxville full creative control and would combine the efforts of the Big Brother Crew (Knoxville and a couple of others); members of CKY (Camp Kill Yourself), an East Coast skateboarding crew and cult heroes in their own right whose members include founder Bam Magera, Brandon DiCamillo, Ryan Dunn, and Chris Raab (“Raab Himself”); a failed circus clown, Steve-O; Spike Jonze, a popular music video and feature film director; as well as Chris “Party Boy” Pontius, Jason "Wee Man" Acuna, Dave England, and Ehren McGhegan. This eclectic collection of enterprising, daring, bored, stupid … and let’s not forget, quite funny … young misfit skateboarders quickly changed the face of television. On one hand, the group found themselves unlikely media darlings and on the other, embroiled in more controversy than they could have ever imagined. When the show hit the airwaves, it quickly became the sweetheart of MTV programming (which isn’t hard to do these days) and in the words of Steve-O, it “slayed” the illustrious 12-34 year old male viewing audience.

The show is best experienced rather than reviewed, but I’ll try to break it down as simply as I can. Jackass is nothing more than a series of stunts and skits that feature cast members performing some of the most dangerous, ridiculous, and hilarious antics you’ve ever seen captured on tape. A guy jumping his bike in to raw sewage, getting up and doing it again? Check. Someone snorting earthworms and hocking them back up? Check. Somebody swallowing goldfish and them regurgitating them out? Check. A guy eating omelette ingredients and regurgitating them into a frying pan only to make an omelet that he then eats on camera? Check. A guy taking a dump on the side of the road in plain view of motorists? Check. A dude who wakes his dad up from dead sleep with a toilet plunger to the face? Check. A boxing match in the middle of a sporting goods store? Check. Ladies and gentlemen, Jackass is ready for take off!

The show’s two-year run on MTV ended a few months back and now, many of the show’s stars are parlaying their inexplicable fame into sweet movie deals and endorsements. The show went out with a bang in October 2002 as Paramount released the highly successful (and very profitable) Jackass: The Movie and it was said that the film was the last hurrah for Jackass crew as we know it. However, for those that need their fix, CKY and Steve-O are still out in full force doing what they love to do (and filming it), while Jackass front man Johnny Knoxville seems to be quite content in Hollywood making the occasional film and leaving his Jackass days behind him.

Ultimately, Knoxville and the Jackass crew don’t really care whether you or I like their material – they did it for little to no money/recognition before and I’m sure they’ll continue to do it as long as they’re able – regardless of ratings, video deals, endorsements, or whatever. They’re out to entertain themselves and themselves alone and if you want to come along for the ride, “fine” – if not, “screw you, we’re going anyway”. This is nothing more than a tight-knit group of friends who have turned doing what they love – being “jackasses” – into a lifestyle that for now, pays real well and gets them a lot of attention. It’s not the end of humanity as we know as many have predicted – it’s simply some stupid, moronic fun that has been documented for our viewing pleasure. If you don’t like – don’t watch – simple as that.

This film is nothing more than a big screen version of the TV show (with a bigger budget) and if you didn’t like the show, you won’t like the movie. All we get are more strung together skits that are a bit more daring … and naked … than what could be shown on TV. The guys definitely push the limit here and put themselves into some quite unusual and often dangerous situations just for a laugh (and now, because they’re so popular, a big paycheck too) and I for one have no problem laughing right along with ‘em.

When it’s all said and done, you already know whether or not you want this DVD, so if you’re in the “Jackass is Stupid and Juvenile” camp, there’s nothing included here but the material that made you hate it in the first place and you won’t find anything new to endear you. However, for fans of Jackass, or any of its participants, this is real deal … the perfect send-off for the cast and crew.

The DVD Grades: Picture B / Audio B- / Bonus B+

Jackass: The Movie comes from Paramount in an anamorphically enhanced transfer in the film’s original theatrical aspect ratio of 1.85:1. The film looked as “professional” as it could considering how the film was made and the material they were presenting and ultimately, the image was consistently sharp and detailed throughout. (As an aside, the studio has a fullscreen version of the film available as well, so make sure when you purchase the DVD, you look for the “Widescreen” banner on the box.)

The Jackass crew got bigger toys to play with in Jackass: The Movie and the lower-end DV cameras that the kids used on the television show have been replaced with much nicer, more professional equipment … all advantages of the much larger budget. The film’s color palette was quite natural looking and presented no concerns whatsoever. Bleeding and oversaturation were never an issue and things looked as pleasing as you might expect them to considering the majority of Jackass: The Movie was shot on video. Ultimately, sewage was appropriately dank and dark looking; puke and dung were grotesquely colorful; and members’ butt-cheeks portrayed accurate fleshtones.

For those of you familiar with the show, the upgrade in picture quality is quite obvious and there’s a very professional “gloss” across the entire production. While the opening and closing segments of the movie were shot on film, the segments in-between were still shot on video – although of a much higher quality than the now defunct television show. However, the overall production values remain the same, as the footage still looks like it was shot by a bunch of kids running around with some high-priced video cameras filming themselves acting like a bunch of jackasses.

Image quality was pretty stable throughout with very few errors encountered. Pixelation was spotted in a couple of areas (usually because the camera was violently jarred for whatever reason), as was a slight amount of shimmer and edge enhancement. Grain was only evident in the darkest of scenes, and print flaws were all but non-existent in the film. All in all, a very pristine print.

Paramount’s presentation looks as good as it possibly can given the type of material involved and fans of the film won’t find anything to complain about here. Everything looks as it should and quite simply Jackass: The Movie has never looked better. Excellent job.

When you upgrade your budget, everything around you gets upgraded and since the boys from Jackass made the leap from the small screen to the big, they got a Dolby Digital 5.1 audio transfer to go along with it. That being said, this isn’t really the type of film that’s going to exploit and/or show off Dolby’s 5.1 capabilities during even its most active moments.

I really don’t know what to tell you about this mix, as if you’ve ever seen the show - and I’m sure the majority of you have at least once in your life – you know what to expect. While the audio has been given a very noticeable and very definitive upgrade from the television show, it’s still not at a level where it can even begin to complete with even a mid-level action blockbuster. Even so, those of us who love the show don’t care and won’t care – none of us are purchasing this disc to show off a really cool pan or impressive ambient moment – we’re buying it to laugh our ass off and thankfully, those moments seem to have been upgraded as well.

In a nutshell, the film is a very forward-driven affair, with a few moments of active surround use. Dialogue was firmly anchored in the front channel and never showed any moments of harshness or edginess in relation to the transfer – and if it was present, it was usually interference from the mics that the crew wore on their person during some of the more active stunts. The film contained a very energetic soundtrack and Paramount presented those tunes with excellent stereo separation and fidelity at all times. The LFE was used to reinforce the soundtrack, as well as add some emphasis to certain effects like heads/bodies bouncing off of the pavement or quick punches to the nuts.

Paramount has also included an English Dolby Surround transfer, as well as English subtitles and all in all, Jackass: The Movie was a pleasing listen.

Paramount has done an excellent job with the supplements for Jackass: The Movie. There’s actually much more than expected, with many of the supplements being quite a nice surprise. Let’s take a look, shall we?

After popping the disc in, we are presented with a theatrical trailer for The Core, as well as a DVD trailer for Extreme Ops and Jackass: Volumes 2 and 3. These can easily be skipped by pressing your –MENU- button if need be.

Starting things of is a Commentary with director Jeff Tremaine, cinematographer Dimitry Elyashkevich, and Johnny Knoxville. This commentary was a lot of fun, as the trio was recorded together and obviously has a great time recalling what it was like making this film. The commentary was evidently recorded a couple of weeks after the film hit theaters and the boys are in a great mood because if I’m not mistaken, the film claimed the #1 spot for at least a couple of weeks. Even so, there’s nothing really technical discussed here, as all you really hear about is the set-up and execution of the stunt that’s currently on the screen, as well as the occasional gem and anecdote from behind-the-scenes. There are definitely some great stories from the group here and this commentary is simply another fun way to watch and enjoy the film.

Surprisingly, there are two commentaries on the disc and the next offering is a feature-length Jackass Group Commentary that features the remainder of the players. Included here are Ehren McGhegan, Steve-O, Bam, Preston, Party Boy, Wee Man, Dave England, and Ryan Dunn and they were all recorded together in order to make this quite a lively experience. This commentary could substitute for the previous one, as it’s nothing more than a bunch of semi-sober guys sitting around watching their movie and goofing on each other. However, this commentary’s a bit more disjointed than the previous one and these guys are quite simply all over the map while watching and discussing the film. Listening to the commentary was a lot of fun and again, a great way to enjoy the film. It’s obvious these guys are a tight-knit and fun-loving group and it was cool to hear them dissect the film for us in the commentary. A really nice addition.

MTV’s “Making of Jackass: The Movie” (24:34) is next and given the fact that I totally dig the source material, I really enjoyed the featurette. The interviews with the cast and crew aren’t as informative as they are funny and there’s not a whole lot to be gleaned here other than these idiots had a great time spending someone else’s money to do stupid stuff and break things. Topics aren’t covered so much as are certain sequences, stunts and/or personalities and I really enjoyed this extra quite a bit. Definitely worth a look for any self-respecting Jackass fan. (That’ll be the first and only time you’ll see “self-respecting” and “Jackass” in the same sentence!)

Next up are a series of Outtakes (7:10) and while this may seem like it’s going to be funny, it really isn’t. This section is really nothing more than flubbed lines during the “Hello. I’m so-and-so and this is –insert stunt name here-.” Funny in spots, but don’t get your hopes up.

Additional Footage (27:51) follows and here we have extensions of segments that ran in the film, as well as segments that were cut. We can select them to view individually (‘Grocery Store Shopping Cart’, ‘Pocket Ass Return’, ‘Seattle Skimboarding’, ‘Ceiling Fan’, ‘Bullfighting for Dollars’, ‘Gary’s Dog’, ‘Mustard Assault’, ‘Preston Chases Wee Man’, ‘Party Boy Rockabilly’, ‘Poo River Pole Vault’, ‘Little Red Wagon’, ‘Bamboo Boo’, ‘Steve-O Nurse Shark’, ‘Phil Vs. Alligator’, ‘Party Boy Rat Tail’, ‘Sand Vagina’, ‘Party Boy Crosswalk’, ‘Party Boy Philosophy’, and ‘The Failed Ending’) or view them all at once through Paramount’s handy –PLAY ALL- feature. Many of the segments were of the same caliber as what ran in the film, so this was almost like having 30-minutes added to the feature itself. This was a really nice addition to Paramount’s already fine set and one that I enjoyed immensely.

A selection of Music Videos follow and included are two selections – “If You’re Gonna Be Dumb” by Roger Alan Wade (fullscreen and Dolby 2.0) and “We Want Fun” by Andrew W.K. (widescreen and Dolby 2.0). Nothing great, but the Andrew W.K. song is pretty catchy if nothing else. Worth checking out at the very least.

Following is a selection of Jackass: The Movie Promo Spots (5:02) and included are nine promos that ran on TV/MTV in promotion of the film. The spots can be selected individually (‘Peer Pressure’, ‘Immunization’, ‘Nutrition’, ‘Hobbies’, ‘Doctor’, ‘Safety on Wheels’, ‘Merchandise Promo’, ‘Critical Acclaim’, and ‘Soundtrack Version C’) or though Paramount’s –PLAY ALL- selection. These TV spots are followed by the film’s Theatrical Trailer.

Finishing off the disc are some rather informative Cast and Crew Biographies, as well as some Galleries of “Photo” and “Poster” variety. The photo gallery was rather generic, but the poster gallery contained some really interesting concepts that I never saw used anywhere in Tupelo, Mississippi (Big Shock!).

Ultimately, Paramount has included a very nice selection of supplements for the film and fans will find themselves very pleased with the results. This was a really great set and one that I’m glad to have in my collection. Job well done from the fine folks at Paramount.

Look - you already know whether or not you want it – my review isn’t going to sway you one way or the other. However, if you enjoyed Jackass, you’ll absolutely love Jackass: The Movie and Paramount’s DVD presentation is worth every penny – guaranteed.

Viewer Film Ratings: 4.2884 Stars Number of Votes: 104
4 3:
View Averages for all rated titles.