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Film Review: 'Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa'

Kathy Zerbib |
October 23, 2013 | 12:29 a.m. PDT

Film Editor

Johnny Knoxville and Jackson Nicoll star as grandpa/grandson in the hilarious new film, "Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa" (Paramount Pictures).
Johnny Knoxville and Jackson Nicoll star as grandpa/grandson in the hilarious new film, "Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa" (Paramount Pictures).
Get ready for a serving of Irving. Johnny Knoxville stars as an 86-year-old senior citizen named Irving Zisman in this hilarious "Jackass" movie.

In "Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa," Irving takes his 8-year-old grandson Billy (Jackson Nicoll) on a cross-country road trip from Nebraska to the boy's father in North Carolina. Irving also had just lost his wife, whom he is no longer fond of. Along the way, he and Billy get caught up in the most outrageous situations and prank hundreds of people.

While the film follows the original 'inappropriate-but-oh-so-funny' formula, this isn't "Jackass" like you've ever experienced it before. "Bad Grandpa" features real people and their real reactions to the insanity of a grandpa and his grandson. Hidden cameras in multiple locations capture shocked expressions and angry comments from regular people in strip clubs, supermarkets, parks, and more.

READ MORE: 'Jackass 3D' Delivers Stupidity In A New Dimension

Irving Zisman isn't a new character. Knoxville donned the old man guise back in 2001, when Irving was on the "Jackass" television show. We aren't shown any instances of the public recognizing him, so it's safe to assume the majority didn't pick up on the filmmakers' ruse.

The humor in "Bad Grandpa" is typical "Jackass." Sexual jokes, fart jokes, and the like are used and abused in this movie. Yet, the comedy is just as genius as ever. Gag after gag is thrown at us and we find ourselves mirroring the reactions of the unsuspecting people experiencing this foolishness live. Definitely a film of "What Would YOU Do?"'s.

Johnny Knoxville is a true master of crude humor. He stays in character throughout the film and proves - once again - that no stunt is too embarrassing for him. Since he plays an old man, he is forced to limit himself with daring stunts. Still, Knoxville ops for equally hilarious ones he can do while in character (i.e. Riding around in a shopping cart, terrorizing a male strip club, etc).

READ MORE: Johnny Knoxville Excels In 'Bad Grandpa'

The grandson in the movie is also remarkable. We feel for poor Billy since the very beginning, when his mother hands him off to Irving and informs him that she's headed to jail. Even at such a young age, Jackson Nicoll has perfected the art of the sad pout. As someone in the theater remarked after the film, "That boy will never be the same... He's corrupted for good now." Just a risk of the job, of course.

Hopefully, "Bad Grandpa" won't only appeal to people who are already "Jackass" fans. Yes, it's still wildly inappropriate humor coupled with a daredevil stuntman. But "Bad Grandpa" actually tells a full-on story, and the innocent public is brought right into the midst of it.

The film was also in memory of Ryan Dunn, one of the "Jackass" members who lost his life in a tragic drunk driving incident.

READ MORE: 'Jackass' Star Ryan Dunn Dies In Car Crash At 34

"Bad Grandpa" pranks its way to a theater near you on October 25th.

Watch Irving's many antics in the film's trailer below.

Reach Film Editor Kathy Zerbib here. Follow her on Twitter here.



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