Jackass Forever

Jackass Forever ★★★★

The joyous fourth movie in a death-defying franchise that continues to find the sweet spot between “Magic Mike XXL” and “Salò, the 120 Days of Sodom,” Jeff Tremaine’s “Jackass Forever” opens with a sequence that accurately sets the tone for the motion picture magic to come. As with all of the sketches that compose this plotless clip reel of brilliant American idiocy, you know that something foul and/or unfathomably painful is about to go down in the cheesy “Godzilla” parody that kicks things off — longtime “Jackass” fans might even be able to guess what it will be — but it still hits with a childlike wave of wonder and revulsion when you see it unfold. It’s no wonder that the film’s biggest laugh comes when someone reacts to a wildly elaborate prank by shouting, in all sincerity, “I knew that was gonna happen!”

In this case, the gag is that the kaiju terrorizing downtown New York is actually Chris Pontius’ flaccid penis (painted green and puppeteered on strings with on-screen help from “Being John Malkovich” director Spike Jonze), and the monster’s legs are played by his wrinkled balls, which groan in response to the miniature rockets fired at them by ringleader Johnny Knoxville and other members of the cast. This will not be the strangest torture inflicted upon Pontius’ junk during the film — a film in which it’s actually Steve-O who suffers the worst of the genital hijinx, thanks to a stunt that I memorialized in my notes as “Candyman’s dick” — but it anticipates a work of art in which nostalgia and shock go as well together as old friends and pig ejaculate. Sometimes there’s so much beauty in the world I feel like I can’t take it.

~this review continues on IndieWire~