Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Tropic Thunder

This is second of the comedy/action flicks to come out this summer and I'm gonna say right off the bat that it is far better. Pineapple Express was funny for sure and Danny McBride and James Franco absolutely steal that show. But now that some time has passed and after seeing Tropic Thunder last night it was very clear to me what was wrong with Pineapple Express. Pacing, pacing pacing. Yes Tropic Thunder is frenetic and completely whacked out of it's mind, but it's a fun ride all the way through. Ben Stiller is wearing many hats for this flick but I think he finally found a comedy that works for him in front of the camera and behind it.I love how they skewer Hollywood with this pic. It's not original, I know, Hollywood has been making fun of itself for quite awhile. Quality flicks like the Player, Swimming with Sharks, Barton Fink, Bowfinger, Adaptation, An Incident at Loch Ness, Get Shorty, Wag the Dog and yes I kind of liked the Hard Way with Michael J. Fox and James Woods. Tropic Thunder fits in snuggly into this genre. We follow Tom Cruise like superstar Tugg "Tuggernuts" Speedman (Ben Stiller), Russell Crowe like chameleon and oscar winner Kirk Lazarus (Robert Downey Jr.), a spastic comedian in the vein of Chris Farley Jeff Portnoy (Jack Black) and rapper turned actor Alpa Chino (Brandon T. Jackson) as they embark on a big scale Vietnam War pic. These guys are total prima donnas as the Director (Steve Coogan) tries to reign them in. With the help of his special effects guy (Danny McBride) and, totally insane, writer of this true story, Four Leaf Tayback (Nick Nolte), they decide to drop their actors literally into the shit. A remote area of Vietnam, specifically, and drop bombs on them so they can feel a real war in order to get that stare through a baptism of fire. Sorry my action cliche's just went into overload. Unfortunately they get caught between the jungle and a real Vietnamese drug cartel. The actors all fall apart in one way or another and it's up to the newbie actor Kevin Sandusky (Jay Baruchel) to get them through it alive.This film was funny from start to finish. From the bit parts of Tuggernuts' ass kissing Agent (Matthew McConaughey) to Tom Cruise as a funny as shit Producer who has some hilarious dance numbers. I loved the faux trailers and I really enjoyed Robert Downey Jr. Yes these guys poke fun at everyone in Hollywood and no it's not exactly PC especially the Simple Jack stuff but it is damn hilarious. Hollywood is obsessed with playing dimwits and mentally challenged people and many of them have received Oscars for their efforts. Like Forrest Gump and Rain Man and then you have the unbearable flicks like The Other Sister and I Am Sam. As Lazurus says in the film "You never never go full retard." Obviously Sean Penn and Giovanni Ribishi didn't heed that advice. That is what they are making fun of not the handicapped children. These special interest groups need to chill out on their boycott. It was definitely the funniest movie of the summer and it really had some great action sequences to boot. So go see it for the laughs, the thrills and especially Tom Cruise dancing like a gangsta'!

Grade: 4 Buckets

No comments: