Knoxville, ‘Bad Grandpa’ hilarious

Posted March 11, 2014


The “Jackass” producers are at again, this time with a hilarious new movie starring the infamous Irving Zisman.

badThe idea to portray an old man came from Johnny Knoxville in the last season of “Jackass” back in 2001. If you’ve ever seen “Jackass” then you already know the raunchy, inappropriate and highly perverted character Zisman is.

Disguised as an 86-year old grandfather, Knoxville uses his infamous “Jackass” tricks to cause trouble and wreck havoc upon mankind. Only this time, instead of bringing along the old Jackass crew, he’s partnered with a 8-year old boy, aka his grandson Billy, played by Jackson Nicoll.

Poor Billy. You just can’t help but to feel sorry for this kid. He’s short and chubby with cheeks a grandmother can’t wait to pinch. He’s sweet and rather quiet and mature for his young age. But his mom’s a crack-addict. His grandmother just died. And since his mom’s on her way to jail, he gets dropped off with the inappropriate, perverted, old Irving Zisman.

The goal for Zisman is to reconnect his grandson with his father. In a road trip across the country, Zisman causes a load of trouble by pulling hidden-camera pranks on people.

The chemistry between Knoxville and his co-star, Jackson Nicoll, is so great that you hardly even notice or miss the rest of the Jackass crew. It’s the growing bond between grandfather and grandson that fuels the heart and soul of this film.

A scene from "Bad Grandpa."

A scene from “Bad Grandpa.”

The pranks are much different than Jackass though. You can definitely see Knoxville’s age trying to catch up with him as he’s traded in those hard-on-the-body pranks for more “lets see if someone punches me in the face” type pranks.

It’s rather interesting how they combined the Jackass style hidden camera pranks with an actual feature film like quality. If you’ve never seen Jackass then you might have a hard time figuring out whether the pranks are real or scripted because the production quality is that good.

For example, the first prank involves Zisman sticking his private parts inside a vending machine. Zisman winds up “stuck” and asks for help from people walking by. By the end of the prank you realize they must be using “live” hidden-cameras because you simply can’t script those very realistic reactions to those obnoxiously inappropriate pranks.

I have to say I was extremely impressed with the high-quality of the production value. The crew really worked hard to keep its Jackass style ways, but drastically improved the production quality to make it hardly recognizable.

Knoxville must have spent eight hours a day in makeup. He is disguised so well you almost have to remember its Knoxville behind the mask.

From the first prank all the way through the credits you’re filled with belly aching laughter. The pranks are well thought out and, honestly, some were a little scary in that I thought old inappropriate Irving Zisman was going to get his ass beat!

The movie starts off a little slow, but progresses into yet another legendary Jackass film. By the end of the movie you are imagining how anyone could get away with such nonsense.

In the credits your question is answered in that after they’ve pissed off a number of people they go back and explain to them that their reactions had been filmed and that they would have an appearance in the movie. Apparently, 15 minutes of fame is enough to satisfy most people and prevent them from killing the crude, Johnny Knoxville.

There were quite a few pranks I re-watched a thousand times on YouTube because they were just that funny. The funniest prank for me involved the male strip club dancers.

Certainly not filled with any decent or moral values whatsoever, the movie does have a hilarious plot with a cute ending that makes you go “awe,” at first. Then you realize “Oh my god. This kid is only eight! Look how he is being raised and what kind of values dear old grandpa is teaching this kid! Somebody call child services immediately!”

I couldn’t help but to think that if this were, in fact, a real grandfather and a real grandson, just how bad that kid would turn out to be. Poor thing. Luckily, it’s not a real film and the kid is as cute as can be.

Being a die-hard fan of “Jackass,” I was both pleased and impressed by the film. For those of you who have a sense of humor I highly recommend it! Even if you’re nearing the “grandfather” age yourself, after watching this movie you’ll be trying to figure out ways to pull off these pranks yourself.

If you thought Borat was the worst thing to ever hit the box office then you certainly won’t be a fan of Bad Grandpa. If you don’t have a sense of humor, if you’re not into hidden camera pranks, if you hated any of the Jackass movies, and if you’re someone with old moral values then by all means do not see this movie!

Most touching was the fact that the film was made for Jackass crew member Ryan Dunn, who tragically died in a car accident in June 2011. At the end of the credits when it says “In memory of Ryan Dunn,” I shed a tear in remembrance of the hilarious Jackass crew member.

If you’re in need of a good laugh, then this film is for you. This movie is for the open-minded, light-hearted and juvenile delinquent sense of humor. If you’re a fan of “Jackass” and you love Jeff Tremaine and Johnny Knoxville, you’re going to love this movie.

  • Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa
  • Starring: Johnny Knoxville as Irving Zisman and Jackson Nicolle as Billy
  • Director: Jeff Tremaine
  • Screenwriters: Jeff Tremaine, Johnny Knoxville, Spike Jonze
  • Running Time: 92 minutes
  • Released: Oct. 9, 2013
  • Category: Comedy
  • Rating: 6.7/10