There is hardly any differentiation between the Jackass series and its films, aside from a few more celebrity cameos and bigger budget stunts as the years have gone by. A testament to this is the “.5” editions of each film, which are literally cobbled together using rejected sketches and stunts from the original release. Unlike when such films as X-Men or Spiderman put out a DVD called 1.5 or some such, this is not simply an expanded version of the original release, but a whole new film. Saying that the Jackass series has X amount of seasons on TV or X amount of movies is relatively useless because that would suggested there is a more defined time line in their history, and we’d have to exclude the copy-cats and offshoots such as Viva La Bam and Wildboyz in the canon. These boys have been filming for over a decade and whenever they get 3 hours worth of usable footage, they put out two movies (one to theatres, one straight-to video), that’s the basic gist of it.
There is honestly not that can be criticized because, at this point, audiences know exactly what they’re in for when it comes to Jackass. Mind you, those that are fans will notice that the stunts have become tamer. In some backwards way, some of the older stunts had either a way of being entertaining for being clever or cute in perfectly harmless ways, or even slightly educational when it came to becoming human guinea pigs for tazers, rubber bullets or other devices that are being used to harm humans on purpose. The stars of Jackass have become just that: “stars.” They have invested many injuries and humiliations to get to where they are today, and are not as willing to take chances these days. There was an interesting bit about paranoia and just how miserable being on a Jackass set can be because pranks can happen at any point. Perhaps some of the stars’ hesitation comes from being exhausted of being victimized whenever they turn their backs or attempt to nap.
Still, there is plenty of pain to witness. My muscle memory was making my tender areas quiver at many points and I burst into a few hearty (albeit immature) chuckles.
Widescreen 1.78:1. Some of the sketches were noted for being filmed with top-of-the-line cameras, and the HD shows (mostly in certain slow-motion scenes) but the rest can vary wildly. Sometimes the camera that caught the best angle was the tiny digital, hand-held one, and thus that is the level of quality we receive. No matter what was used to film, things are cleaned up nicely and the varying of quality can hardly be blamed on those that transferred the footage to DVD and Blu Ray.
DTS;HD Master Audio in English. There are some moments of music that demonstrate a little bit of budget-muscle flexing, but mostly we get groans, screams and laughs in all speakers. Which is fine…
Jackass: The Beginning: A surprisingly thorough mini-documentary that profiles the history of Jackass, where it began, how everyone got involved and the surprise of its massive fame. Starting with some lucky breaks through a skate magazine, we are privy to loads of clips and interviews that do a fine job of explaining this weird phenomenon.
Deleted Scenes: This film IS nothing but deleted scenes already…and here’s some more!
Outtakes: These guys are the subject of bloopers and folleys? Get out of town!
Jackass European Tour: Yet another testament to how massive these guys are… worldwide!
As I stated before, people should know what they’re in for by know with these lads. It’s immature, very much an acquired taste and not for the faint of heart or stomach.
(I feel the need to comment on the very recent passing of Jackass star Ryan Dunn. Dunn and all of these men place themselves at risk as they act wild and perform stunts, but alcohol and driving is a very serious thing and should never be considered safe on any occasion. The friends of Mr. Dunn have reinforced this stance upon the news of his death, and I feel it cannot be repeated enough: Don’t drink and drive. RIP Ryan Dunn.)