As the great Mike Patton once sang: "It's always funny until someone gets hurt, and then it's just hilarious!" These appear to be words to live by for the "Jackass" crew, who are back for a third round of shenanigans in "Jackass 3D." The guys that hurt themselves for laughs so you don't have to are back in full form and if you think age has tempered their appetite for danger and potty-humor, then you are sorely mistaken.
Johnny Knoxville, Steve-O, Bam Margera, Ryan Dunn, Wee Man, Preston Lacy, Chris Pontius, Dave England, Ehren McGhehey -- all the names and faces you've come to know over the years -- make their return (with a few stragglers left behind, naturally) to the feature-length film format to abuse 3D technology in ways that would infuriate James Cameron. Flying feces? Check. Unnecessarily exposed male genitalia? Check. The ever-reliable vomiting of a now-sober Steve-O? You bet. If you thought the envelope had been pushed as far as it would go before, think again. This "Jackass" is a full three dimensions of dumb and disgusting.
Tastelessness aside, there's something both cinematic and slightly sentimental about this installment. Maybe it's all the slow-motion shots and Rocky references, but for the first time it appears as if director Jeff Tremaine is taking his craft a bit more seriously. The over-the-top opening and closing of the movie are nothing short of epic (at least by MTV standards) and if anything, it's the finest looking "Jackass" to date. Likewise, the cast seems to be stepping it up a notch; not only are they going to the extreme here, but they seem to be enjoying it more than ever. The film just so happens to mark the tenth-year anniversary of the franchise, so it's no coincidence that the sense of camaraderie is tighter than before. For the first time, it appears as though the guys are having as much fun laughing at themselves as we are.
There are plenty of memorable stunts -- from an updated porto-potty gag dubbed "The Poo-Cocktail Supreme" to a stinker of a man-made volcano and a scene involving bees that rivals the hilariousness of Nic Cage in the infamous The Wicker Man remake -- and just as many laughs to go around. Cameos from the likes of Sean William Scott, Weezer, Rip Taylor, and Beavis and Butt-Head are along for the ride, but the true stars remain the main crew and their non-stop disregard for their own well-being. Dumb and reckless, yet unrelentingly amusing, this third installment in the unlikely franchise is guaranteed to have you giggling mindlessly while simultaneously squirming in your seat.