Bad Grandpa: The must see comedy of fall

Kelly Klein

Johnny Knoxville has always known how to make an audience laugh. Whether the star of the Jackass movies is launching off a ski jump in a go-cart or catapulting his friend in a giant sling-shot, Knoxville has done it all. That is until Bad Grandpa was released last Friday as a spinoff of the Jackass films.

This outrageous movie differs from the previous three Jackass films because it actually has a plot, which made it funnier in a sense.  The film follows Knoxville as Irving, an 86-year-old grandpa, and his eight-year-old grandson, Billy (Jackson Nicoll) in their trip across the country.

The film was shot in the American South, where the rambunctious pair play various stunts and pranks on the unsuspecting general public, resulting in various and hysterical plot twists. Because the pranks were played on unpaid an unscripted actors, the film was able to capture the spontaneous improvisation of these two lively actors.

Knoxville, also the co-producer of the film, managed to use these improvised scenes to create a plot.  Due to Billy’s mother being sent to jail for drug abuse, Irving was responsible for taking Billy, his grandson that he had met only once before, to his father’s house in the South.

Clearly, neither parents had set a good example for their son, and Irving has no urge to do so either.

On their hilarious journey, Irving and Billy get into a great deal of trouble entering in beauty pageants, dancing in strip clubs, and shoplifting from numerous grocery stores. While much of the movie consists of a good amount of cursing, explicit inappropriate dancing, and grotesque humor, the audience can’t help but laugh at this juvenile film.

“Bad Grandpa” was rightfully rated R, due to “strong crude and sexual content throughout, language, some graphic nudity, and brief drug use.” Nevertheless, watching this film is perfect for viewers to let loose and enjoy some of the immature, yet highly amusing entertainment that Knoxville and Nicoll display.

Despite the ridiculous jokes, the connection between Irving and Billy deepens as the movie progresses, which seemed a bit off in relation to the overall theme of the movie. Corny and sentimental conversations between Billy and his grandpa simply didn’t fit with the overriding tone. One second, Irving would be farting obnoxiously in public, and the next, having a meaningful conversation with Billy as to why his parents abandoned him.

Luckily, the few melodramatic moments didn’t leave the movie with the lasting impression.  The last scene depicted Irving and Billy fishing from a bridge as Irving’s dead wife floated along the river.

This ending perfectly summed up the great relationship between a grandfather and his grandson, with an amusing, twisted humor that only a Jackass film could effectively pull off. Johnny Knoxville has done it again, for better or for worse.