Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Tim Kirkby|
|Distributed by||Paramount Pictures|
|Box office||$5.1 million|
Action Point is a 2018 American comedy film directed by Tim Kirkby and starring Johnny Knoxville and Chris Pontius. Knoxville was inspired to make the film after seeing Matt Robertson's 2013 short documentary The Most Insane Amusement Park Ever, about Action Park, a theme park in New Jersey which was notorious for poorly designed, unsafe rides, in addition to employing underaged, undertrained and often under-the-influence staff.
As with Bad Grandpa, a previous film by Knoxville, Action Point features traditional Jackass-style stunts connected by a fictional narrative. It was released in the United States on June 1, 2018 by Paramount Pictures. It underperformed at the box office and received mostly negative reviews from critics, who called the film "boring, by-the-numbers and deflated."
Deshawn Chico "D.C." Carver (Johnny Knoxville) during a visit from his granddaughter narrates his experiences about when he owned what he refers to as one of the greatest amusement parks of all time.
Many years ago, D.C. was the crackpot owner of Action Point, a low-rent, out-of-control amusement park with dangerous rides. Despite the immense danger due to inexperienced and untrained staff, poorly designed rides, and minimal low quality maintenance, the park was popular with kids due to being the only amusement park around. However, during one season, a new amusement park, '7 Parks', with higher safety standards than Action Point opens up and begins to steal its clientele. D.C. is also pressured by his loan officer Knoblach into selling his land due to his failure to pay off a $100,000 loan which will be nearly impossible due to the new competition. Also, his estranged teenage daughter Boogie (Eleanor Worthington Cox) comes to visit and begins to help out at the park as a summer job.
One night, D.C. and his staff break into '7 Parks' to observe their competition and sabotage but trip the alarm and are nearly caught. D.C. realizes that he'll need to come up with something big to compete. After his first idea causes him to get blasted down one of his own waterslides, he has an epiphany and realizes that they need to start promoting Action Point as a park about stuff patrons can do, versus 7 Parks being about what they can't do. He decides to take off all safety procedures and brakes on rides in an attempt to make the park stand out, but this causes several people including himself to be horribly injured. Boogie also confesses to Benny that the real reason she's here is to get her dad to sign papers allowing for her mother's boyfriend to become her legal guardian.
As a publicity stunt, D.C. and the staff interrupt a local TV broadcast promoting the park as so chaotic it must be shut down, and this succeeds in bringing back customers, but sends the park into complete anarchy due to the lack of rules and regulations. At Boogie's advice, D.C opens up a kiddie land which is poorly designed and causes her to call legal authorities who deem the park dangerous and shut it down.
D.C. and the staff fix up the park and it reopens, but are told that the bank has foreclosed on the park and that they only have 10 business days to pay back the rest of the loan. To draw more people, they shoot a TV commercial, which they swap with a planned 7 Parks commercial after breaking into a local TV broadcast center. The plan works and they are overwhelmed with customers. Just as they are able to get on track to repay the loan on time, they are hit with a 2 million dollar lawsuit from an injured patron at the park forcing him to dedicate himself to his work. Upset that her father broke his promise to take her to a Clash concert, Boogie gets drunk with the staff and they all get arrested. After D.C. bails her out, she snaps at him and reveals about her intentions for him to sign the papers. The next day, he finds that she's left and learns from a janitor at the bus station that she may have left on a bus heading for Las Vegas. Desperate, he and Benny chase down the bus with their car but lose it after it collides with them.
D.C. realizes that she wasn't on the bus and tracks her to a restaurant. There, he explains that after he lost his family, the park became his new family and the reason he was so obsessed with it was because he didn't want to lose it as well. Unable to pay off his loan, he decides to blow up the park and sell off the land to Knoblach. To get back at him however, D.C. opens the park gates one last time distributing free beer to everyone as he is no longer liable for any damages that will occur from this action. The drunk patrons go wild and cause massive damage to the park, allowing it to go out in glory. Knoblach attempts to stop the patrons from destroying everything, but gets knocked out in the process. Late that night, the park is in shambles and the staff gathers one last time shooting fireworks everywhere to mark the end of an era.
The next day, as Boogie prepares to leave, D.C. proposes that the two of them instead take a road trip and during it stop in Austin where Clash is playing. Boogie is overjoyed and the former park staff offer to come along.
D.C. finishes his story as Boogie arrives home and he leaves after being told how much he means to both of them. He pretends to have a heart attack in the yard, but Boogie knows he is faking it and calls him on it as the two of them share a laugh.
- Johnny Knoxville as Deshawn Chico "D.C." Carver
- Chris Pontius as Benny
- Eleanor Worthington Cox as Boogie
- Susan Yeagley as adult Boogie
- Dan Bakkedahl as Knoblach
- Camilla Wolfson as Mia
- Johnny Pemberton as Ziffel
- Brigette Lundy-Paine as Four Finger Annie
- Eric Manaka as Rodney
- Joshua Hoover as Pete
- Conner McVicker as Stiv
- Matt Schulze as Killer
- Michael Everson as Slappy
- Matthew Peterson as Travis Knoblach
- Leon Clingman as Joel Green
Knoxville, in an interview with Vanity Fair, said that during filming, he was injured more times than his past films throughout his entire career: "four concussions, broke my hand, busted my meniscus, whiplash, stitches over my right eye which required stitches, lost a couple teeth." While filming the Alpine Slide sequence, he landed on his face, feet, and shoulder. After filming, he was sent to the emergency room, checked out, and went home. When he blew his nose to get rid of the blood, his left eye popped out of his socket. Freaked out, he immediately called his executive producer, who advised him that he needed to return to the hospital. The doctors told him that he could not sneeze or blow his nose for six weeks. In the last days of filming, they filmed only the right side of his face, because he looked like "a Picasso painting."
In the United States and Canada, Action Point was released alongside Adrift and Upgrade, and was originally projected to gross around $10 million from 2,032 theaters in its opening weekend. However, after making $790,000 on its first day, estimates were lowered to $2–3 million. It ended up debuting to $2.3 million and finishing ninth, the worst opening of Knoxville's career and 23rd lowest-ever for a wide release. Deadline Hollywood attribute the low figure to the lack of Jackass stars in the film sans Knoxville, poor critical reviews and the difficulty of promoting an original R-rated comedy.
On review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 13% based on 46 reviews, and an average rating of 3.5/10. The site's critical consensus simply reads, "Ouch." On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 36 out of 100, based on 19 critics, indicating "generally unfavorable reviews". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "C+" on an A+ to F scale.
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