Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa .5 (2014)
Directed by: Jeff Tremaine
Written by: Adam Small, Fax Bahr, Jeff Tremaine, Johnny Knoxville, Spike Jonze
Starring: Catherine Keener, Jackson Nicoll, Jeff Tremaine, Johnny Knoxville, Spike Jonze
JACKASS PRESENTS: BAD GRANDPA .5 (2014)
Directed by Jeff Tremaine
On VOD and Download
Bad Grandpa .5 is a feature length documentary on the behind-the-scenes action of the Jackass Presents comedy BAD GRANDPA which was released in 2013. This version does NOT contain the main film whatsoever, and is instead a look at how the stunts and pranks were set up as well as a look at a few unseen pranks and victims from the film.
Not having seen Bad Grandpa as of yet, though I really am looking forward to, it’s hard to describe what stunts from this documentary actually made it into the film and what ended on the cutting room floor. One I know for sure didn’t make it in the movie is how Johnny Knoxville as his elderly character Irving Zisman managed to convince a workman into burying his wife into a hole in the ground which the worker just dug out. It would appear the team thought no-one would bite, but in fact two people did which left them a bit stumped and instead they decided to dispose of the ‘body’ some other fashion for the story of the movie.
In the Bad Grandpa film, besides the titular character of Irving Zisman, then-9 year old Jackon Nicoll starred as Irving’s mischievious grandson Billy. In Bad Grandpa .5. hardly any scenes involving Billy are shown, instead the team opt for pranks with Irving in which they received a variety of reactions. Co-writer and producer Spike Jonze, director of She, also stars in Bad Grandpa as a promiscuous pensioner called Gloria. Spike’s role as Gloria is detailed in this documentary, showing how he attempted to wind Johnny Knoxville up whilst in character as Irving as well as receiving crude attention from a string of men who’d replied to a lonely hearts advert on Craigslist.
Most of the major stunts shown in the trailer for Bad Grandpa seem to be missing from the documentary, with the team keen to show the smaller stunts. The penguin car smash one is included though, and reveals banter between Knoxville’s Zisman and the man who’s aggravated by the penguin’s destruction.
If you’re a fan of filmmaking in general, you’ll find a great deal to enjoy from this documentary. It details the problems they had concealing video cameras and microphones near where the stunts would take place as well as marks who wouldn’t notice the pranks or react in the way they’d have liked them to. Clearly doing something of this calibre, much like the similar-style Borat I’d assume, takes a lot of time, with the possibility of everything not going strictly to plan or getting an entertaining reaction that would be good enough to put into the main film.
Regardless if you’ve seen the Bad Grandpa film or not, there’s lots to enjoy in Bad Grandpa .5 with plenty of laughs had from Johnny Knoxville and Spike Jonze, who looked like they had a whale of a time shooting the movie and pranking innocent bystanders. However, I’m guessing this would be better seen after watching the main movie, then certain pranks wouldn’t be spoiled.