A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this DVD release compilation of the Finnish reality show's violent exploits is a non-stop succession of brutal pranks performed as entertainment. Imitating them could lead to serious injury and/or death. As a result, this DVD is not recommended for kids and younger teens, and parents should exercise caution when allowing older teens to watch, too. Parents should also know that the show includes brief nudity and sexualizes women. In one instance, the guys catch a couple in the act of having sex in a barn. The only upside to all of this is that the guys truly seem to care for each other (although they still attack each other violently).
What's the story?
Jarppi, Jukka, Jarno, and HP are guys in their late 20s who make their living disfiguring their bodies and injuring their friends through a series of over-the-top destructive pranks and tricks. They have their own reality show, imported and shown on Spike TV, and they were the inspiration for the, well, Jackass behavior by Johnny Knoxville, Steve-O, and Bam Margera. Sure, the guys are young, cute, and giggle all the way through their amputated-finger and punctured-lung adventures, but the injuries are permanent and sometimes life threatening. The quartet, who call themselves The Dudesons, live on a farm in Finland and seem to spend all their time figuring out ways to hurt themselves and their friends. THE DUDESONS is what would happen if all the dudes, skateboarders, and extreme skiers lived together on a farm in the Arctic Circle. The guys are adrenaline junkies, and it shows. "HP makes me laugh every time he hurts himself," declares one of the Dudesons as HP, dubbed the "Bonebreaker," flips over backward and lands on his neck. The group breaks into hysterics.
Is it any good?
This is extreme sports meets extreme stupidity. Since the movie is directed by Bam Margera of Jackass and Viva La Bam fame, it'll be no surprise if your teen wants to watch this DVD. Bam and Steve-O are cult heroes for some teens. These are the same guys who watch snowboarding and skateboarding videos with their friends and howl when the featured snowboarder wipes out. It's the crashes more than the successes that attract them.
Of course, sometimes it's hard to see the violence for all the joy. The guys truly care for each other, and they seem to get immense pleasure out of hurting themselves because it makes their friends laugh. If you do let your teen watch this, it might be a good idea to talk about how teens can get the same kind of reactions from their friends without putting themselves in danger.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about why some people find the Dudesons' behavior funny and why it's not fit for imitation. What consequences do the guys experience from their pranks? What physical injuries do the pranks cause? Do you agree with Jarno's comment that "pain is momentary but beauty is forever?" Moreover, what's the appeal of programs that show people injuring themselves violently for entertainment?
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