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If you have not see Paramount's upcoming "Bad Grandpa," and you're interested it in seeing it, then might I recommend that you not watch the new red-band trailer for the film?
Here's my thinking: part of the thrill of seeing the film, as with every film in the "Jackass" series, comes from the surprise of how the gags unfold. Some of the set-ups are obvious, but what really makes the film work is seeing how the jokes play out and seeing how they play variations on the gag.
Running this sort of red-band R-rated trailer gives you a good idea of just how far the film is willing to go for a joke. The vending machine joke that opens the trailer is far more visually upsetting than this lets on, and there's a sequence they show a bit of that comes later in the film that is absolutely insane.
Seeing the film in a packed theater, I was entertained as much by the screams that came from people in the theater as I was by the things happening onscreen. A trailer like this one sort of robs you of that sense of shock because it shows you too much. The film is about to come out, so I feel like a trailer like this is for people who aren't particularly interested in the film already. Maybe they'll see something here that will convince them to give it a try.
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Spike Jonze suggested to me in Toronto this year that the "Jackass" brand is not going anywhere, and that "Bad Grandpa" may have rekindled the feeling that this is still fun for the people behind the scenes, something that must have felt a lot less certain in the wake of Ryan Dunn's death. The idea of doing a narrative film that was filmed in the "Jackass" style was not necessarily an easy one, but "Bad Grandpa" feels like it belongs on the same shelf as the earlier films in the series, and I'll have an interview for you later this week that should convince you further.
"Bad Grandpa" opens everywhere on Friday.