“Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa,” which stars Johnny Knoxville as a cantankerous 86-year-old man who takes his 8-year-old grandson on a road trip, opened with $32 million, beating reigning box office champ “Gravity.”
While the film follows the “Jackass” principle of pranking real and unsuspecting people to hilarious effect, “Bad Grandpa” also has heart, which makes us think about other very bad people who somehow warm our pumpers.
Billy Bob Thornton plays a truly awful human being, particularly when he’s pretending to be a mall Santa Claus in order to rob the place. A Santa, mind you, that is so drunk, he pees on himself in front of the kids. Yet, when he meets a sweet little boy who believes in him no matter what horrible thing he does, it turns him into a not-so-bad Santa.
Like Billy Bob Thornton, Cameron Diaz is equally detestable in “Bad Teacher,” albeit in a tad more narcissistic way. Her main goal throughout the film is to garner enough money for a boob job. Still, she finally gains a small semblance of a conscience and gets into the spirit of teaching her middle-schoolers.
Granted, Jonah Hill, Michael Cera and Christopher Mintz-Plasse play typical high school boys, trying desperately to get girls by promising to bring alcohol to a party. What comes out of their adventurous night, however, is a stronger bond of their friendship.