A reckless amusement park owner tries to promote his business by making his rides less safe.
I didn’t know too much about this movie before going into it, but I had read about the real life amusement park that this film was based on: Action Park. According to Wikipedia, six people died at this park over the course of about seven years. The idea that a movie would be made about this place intrigued me, and I was interested to see if this would give a timeline of how things happened.
I should’ve known better when I saw that Johnny Knoxville was top-billed. There was nothing at all true about the story they showed us here; claiming this is based on a true story is utterly ridiculous.
Johnny Knoxville is best known for his appearance on “Jackass”; the MTV show that was popular in the early 2000s. If you haven’t seen or heard of this program before, it essentially revolves around a bunch of idiots getting together to prank each other and celebrate stupidity. Most of their jokes are poop and fart related, sometimes they jump off things and fall down, sometimes they get hit with things… It’s a show that revels in lowest common denominator physical humor.
Don’t get me wrong, I saw a few episodes of the show when I was in high school and thought it was funny. But that’s the audience this film is aimed at: high school boys, or people who get a kick out of making fart noises with their mouths. It’s juvenile and gets old rather quickly. This is easily the stupidest movie I’ve reviewed for TMM so far in 2018.
What I Didn't Like
Well, essentially everything.
Let's start with the humor. This movie is meant to be a comedy, I think. Ninety percent of the ‘jokes’ in this picture are watching people fall down. A guy goes fast down a slide and falls off, a guy gets hit by another guy on a bike and falls down, a person gets sprayed with a hose and falls down, a person gets close-lined on a motorcycle and falls down, a man gets treed by a bear and then falls down…
The other ten percent of the jokes weren’t jokes either, but attempts to shock the audience. 'Oh no, Johnny Knoxville said an outdated racist term.' So funny. Chris Pontius is hitting on Johnny Knoxville’s fifteen-year-old daughter. Hilarious. Eleanor Worthington-Cox is drinking underage. Haha.
This isn’t humor. There are no jokes. It’s just lazy people doing stupid things because it still gets them laughs.
Apparently Johnny Knoxville, who still does his own stunts (that's kind of impressive), was injured more on this shoot than he was during the filming of any of his other movies. There’s even reports of his left eyeball popping out of his socket after one stunt went wrong. He’s pretty much killing himself for the stupidest movies in the world. Maybe we could save his life by not seeing his movies (movie flop = no money = no more movies = he lives to be fifty).
Some comedies like to claim they’ve got a joke a minute; well, this film probably has a fall a minute. Within the first fifteen minutes it became incredibly apparent that this was going to be all this movie offered. Within twenty minutes I was already checking my phone to see how much time I had left. Within forty minutes I was having an internal debate on weather or not I should just get up and leave (I stayed for this review, dear reader… I stayed for you, so you wouldn’t have to experience it). And by the time the movie ended I wondered how this film got green lit and why anyone in their right mind would find what they’d seen funny.
The story (if you can call it that) is so ridiculously basic and predictable that you can pretty much guess how the movie will progress to the minute. There are no twists or surprises; everything is just an excuse to get to the next bit of people falling down.
Johnny Knoxville tries to weave a little sentimentality into the movie by telling the story in flashback form. He’s an old grandpa relaying his glory days to his younger granddaughter. He has to narrate pretty much any forward progression of the plot; without the voiceovers, the film would’ve been a string of vignettes that have no correlation other than being shot in the same park.
Johnny can’t really act either. He pretty much throws himself (literally) in front of things for laughs, and hopes that it’s still working. Chris Pontius, another “Jackass” alum, was one of the other main characters. I’m pretty sure Chris was high on something the entire shoot. His eyes kept darting back and forth, he kept grinding his teeth, and in the bloopers shown at the end of the film he kept calling himself ‘Chris’ instead of his character’s name.
Eleanor Worthington-Cox was the only one who seemed to be taking the film seriously, which is too bad. The only other thing I’ve seen her in was “Maleficent”, and from what I remember she was fine in that too. Eleanor seemed to think this was a real movie, and she really seemed to give it her all. There were scenes when Johnny Knoxville and her butted heads (they play father and daughter), and she easily outperformed him. If there was anything good in this movie, it was her, and I wouldn’t even say she was fantastic, just miles ahead of her co-stars.
This is the worst movie I’ve reviewed from this site, period. I thought “Rampage” was going to be the worst movie I reviewed this year, but boy was I wrong. Don’t see this movie, please. Johnny Knoxville will keep doing stunts, and someday soon he’s going to kill himself doing this schlock. Save a life, skip the film.
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