As much as I like to pretend I'm a pretentious, high-minded supporter of filmmaking as art, I really, really love 'Jackass.' For better or worse, I'm fairly certain I'm the only member of the Los Angeles Film Critics Association who put both 'Synecdoche, New York' and 'Jackass Number Two' on his Top Ten of the last decade. But while you – much less they – may or may not agree that Johnny Knoxville's breakthrough TV show and subsequent film series is as hilarious, fun, and enjoyable as I do, 'Jackass 3D' is a sort of antidote to this year's cinematic doldrums, a gag-inducing celebration of the stupidity that's ubiquitous in the majority of 2010's offerings, albeit gloriously worn on its sleeve rather than submerged in the pretense of high-concept entertainment, much less capital-A art.
Like the show that inspired it, 'Jackass 3D' has no narrative. Rather, it's comprised of a nonstop series of stunts, pranks and stupid tricks that the now-established ensemble of idiots play on each other, and seemingly as often, themselves. Their leader, as always, is the indefatigable Johnny Knoxville, who subjects himself to many of the worst stunts despite being the one who most often gets the most injured. Meanwhile, there's Steve-O and Chris Pontius, stars of the 'Jackass'TV 'spin-off "Wildboyz,' both of whom are still game to tackle whatever Knoxville makes them eat, wear, or in Pontius' case, not wear. Bam Margera is also back, terrorizing his parents Phil and April, as are his cohorts Dave England, Ehren McGheghey and Ryan Dunn. And then there's Preston Lacy and Wee Man, whose contrast in physical size continues to be a great source of humor.