Posted in: Disc Reviews by Archive Authors on January 9th, 2007
Four years after Jackass: The Movie took the popular MTV franchise to the big screen, Johnny Knoxville and his gang returned to theatres with Jackass – Number Two. The sequel is bigger, bolder and much more disgusting. But is it better?
In my humble opinion, the sequel equates to more of the same. If you loved the original, you’ll eat this up. If you hated it – and we both know those are the only two options – you can happily make indignant remarks to any friends or family in the “love it” camp.
All of the key players are back, with Knoxville, Bam Margera, Steve-O, Chris Pontius, Preston Lacy, Ryan Dunn, Dave England and others. They also roped in some big-name guest stars, including Tony Hawk, Spike Jonze, Mike Judge and Luke Wilson, who also helped produce the film. If anything, this colourful cast of characters is even stronger in this sequel, since we know them all better than we did four years ago.
But really, it’s all about the stunts, pranks and vile acts. I’d hate to spoil them for anyone, so let’s just say the guys get up to some really, really crazy sh*t. After years of this stuff, I guess the Jackass crew sometimes has to take things really far to get whatever rush they get out of their antics. That’s not to say this sequel is all about big, outlandish stunts. There are plenty of short, easy gags here, and some of them are among the film’s funniest. That said, there’s a good chance there’ll be moments when you feel more like vomiting than laughing. Those super-gross-out acts have always been my least favourite of the series, so I certainly didn’t appreciate the extremely revolting stuff. The next time I watch this, I’ll just skip to the scenes I can stomach.
As for the unrated aspect of this release, I’m afraid I’m not sure exactly what has been added, as I didn’t catch this one in theatres. Given the large amount of offensive content, it could be anything, but if I had to put money on it, I’d say any of the full-frontal male nudity is probably new to this version.
What else can I say? The lack of concept novelty in this sequel is offset by the raised levels of audacity in the stunts, so Jackass – Number Two really is as good as the original. If you loved it before, the only thing that might get in your way is some sort of newfound maturity, but we both know that’s all a ruse anyway.
So the movie is crazy, raunchy and hilarious. How’s the DVD?
Jackass – Number Two (Unrated Widescreen Edition) is presented on one disc, in 1.85:1 widescreen format. It looks nice and sharp, and is free of compression artifacts. Given the nature of the source material, there’s inconsistency in video quality, but I don’t think any of it is the DVD’s fault. Overall, a great transfer.
The main menu is animated, and scored.
Audio is available in Dolby Digital 5.1 and Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround. I’ll focus on the 5.1 mix, but rest assured that the 2.0 track is just fine. Jackass isn’t an effects-laden film, but what’s here sounds great. All dialogue is clear, and the more aurally interesting sequences are well presented.
Subtitles are available in English and Spanish.
Jackass – Number Two (Unrated Widescreen Edition) comes with plenty of bonus material to sink your teeth into.
First off, there’s an audio commentary by most the cast, director Jeff Tremaine and cinematographer Dimitry Elyashkevich. As you might expect, this one is more entertaining than it is informative. The Jackass guys obviously enjoy their work, and this track is good for some extra laughs.
The main featurette is The Making of: Jackass Number Two. It runs about 30 minutes, and takes us behind the scenes with footage and cast and crew interviews. This one is definitely worth watching, with perhaps the most interesting bits being about how fame interferes with any sort of hidden-camera stunts in public, and how the Jackass lawyers constantly worry about someone getting killed. As you’ll see in the film, that worry is most definitely warranted.
Then there’s a whole whack of additional segments, split into three separate sections for some flimsy reason. The first batch is the “unrated” ones, which include an introduction warning about the homoerotic nature of the stunts. From what I can tell, that basically means they’re chock-full of male nudity and innuendo. Then there’s a bunch of deleted scenes, some of which you’ll see in the main film’s closing credits. The final section is the additional segments, which show more of the closing sequence stuff. All told, these extra scenes add up to nearly 50 minutes of extra footage, and are just as worthy of viewing as the main film.
There’s also an eight-minute set of Outtakes, which are never as funny as you hope they’ll be. These are pretty good, but my expectations were high given the context, and they weren’t met. They do include more shocking of Luke Wilson, who offers up the sage advice, “This isn’t worth it – one of you guys is gonna die!”
Next up is a two-minute collection of promo spots from the VMAs. Each one includes a short stunt or gag, and they’re on par with the film. Funny stuff.
Then we have Karazy Music Video, which includes the Jackass gang and a song written and performed by Chris Pontius (a.k.a. Party Boy). It runs about three minutes, and is pretty darn weird, with the guys frolicking in beds and the shower. In other words, more of the homoerotic stuff.
The special features wrap up with a photo gallery, the film’s theatrical trailer and a collection of previews.
Jackass – Number Two is a worthy sequel that ratchets up the crazy, hilarious and disgusting stuff we’ve come to expect from Knoxville and the gang. It’s presented here on a top-notch DVD, with solid audio and video and a great collection of bonus material.