The Harbinger Online

“Bad Grandpa” Not Up to Par

Walking into the newest “Jackass” movie, my hopes were high. I’ve always loved these movies. They are always filled with nonstop laughter. And when I say nonstop — I mean nonstop. The insane stunts keep on coming and coming — that’s what “Jackass” is. Non-stop entertainment. But as the newest “Jackass” movie, “Bad Grandpa” dragged on and on, and I couldn’t help yawn throughout the 90 minute movie.

“Bad Grandpa” stars Johnny Knoxville (from the other “Jackass” movies) as 86-year-old Irving Zisman, and Jackson Nicoll as 8-year-old Billy. The plot is centered around Irving taking Bill, his grandson, on a road trip to his real father.

The action is presented in two separate ways. It will go from hidden camera scenes, (where hidden cameras capture Knoxville and Zisman playing pranks on random people), to acted out parts between Knoxville and Nicoll, most of which takes place between the two in the car. The reason for the transition back and forth is to keep the plot flowing, and so it seems like they’re really grandpa and grandson. Not only are the scripted parts not funny, but the transitions make the whole thing awkward. One second you’re in a funny hidden camera scene, the next a scripted scene between the two. All I could think about during those acted out parts were how cheesy they were. The transition between the two doesn’t work. During every scripted scene, my mind would focus in saying, “Oh, this is acted out, this is acted out,” and it was all I could think about during those scenes.

Another flaw in the movie is that the hidden camera scenes weren’t long enough. Many of them would cut out right as I wanted more. Nearly all of the hidden camera scenes were hilarious, but they all felt too short. I wanted more of those hilarious reactions from those random people.

“Bad Grandpa” had its funny moments. With the ridiculous hidden camera plots Knoxville comes up with, it’s always bound to be funny. And it was. But it just wasn’t funny enough. Usually, watching Jackass movies is two hours of nonstop laughter. But “Bad Grandpa” wasn’t full of laughs, but partial boredom mixed with laughter here and there.

Overall I was pretty disappointed. This was really the first time that I didn’t love something starring Johnny Knoxville. I would still suggest seeing it, it was a funny movie. Just not good compared to his others. You get a few good laughs in, but it just wasn’t enough.

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