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Tropic Thunder (DVD)

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Genre: Comedy / Director: Ben Stiller / Actors: Ben Stiller, Robert Downey Jr., Jack Black, Steve Coogan, Jay Baruchel ... / Features of the DVD: PAL

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    Your dooyooMiles Miles

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      21.10.2012 17:08
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      Plenty of fun and full-on action.

      Tropic Thunder is the story of an ill-fated attempt to make the greatest war movie ever, with a cast comprising of stagnating action hero Tugg Speedman (Ben Stiller), drug abusing gross-out comedian Jeff Portnoy (Jack Black) and zealous character actor Kirk Lazarus (Robert Downey Jr). With production stalling and the cast at each others' throats, the director hits upon a way to get the movie rolling again, dumping his 'soldiers' into the middle of the jungle. However, between the clashing of personalities and the local drug smugglers hunting them, it isn't long before things start to go horribly, hilariously wrong.

      The real strength of this movie is its casting, with most of the actors in Tropic Thunder playing larger-than-life versions of themselves. The film enjoys playing with the gap between the actors and characters they portray, using this juxtaposition to great comedic effect. Downey Jr and Black in particular really sell their performances and easily have some of the funniest dialogue in the whole movie. The action set-pieces are frantic and entertainingly over-the-top, with plenty of huge explosions and snappy one-liners, everything that you'd expect to find in the kind of movie Tropic Thunder is ostensibly poking fun at. However, there's also plenty of very human humor to be found during the film's quieter moments as the characters shoot the breeze and we get to know them that little bit better, keeping a nice balance.

      Tropic Thunder is very funny, carried for the most part by the actors' good-humored self-parody. Definitely worth a watch.

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      12.09.2012 13:00
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      A great film

      About the film
      Tropic Thunder is an action/ comedy film that was released in 2008. The film is rated 15 due to language and scenes of violence and drug references. Tropic Thunder has a run time of 106 minutes or the Director's Cut is 120 minutes/

      Plot
      A group of high profile actors are in Southeast Asia filming a Vietnam War memoir but filming is not going to plan. Only in the stages of early shooting, the film is way behind schedule and well over budget. In an attempt to get things back on track, novice director is talked into changing the way that the film is shot - making it more like a reality show that the actors know nothing about. However, the director is killed and the cast are left to fend for themselves. While they think everything is a set-up, star Tugg Speedman is kidnapped by local drug dealers and doesn't realise that they aren't acting at all. It's all down to the rest of the insane cast to rescue Tugg but will he actually want to leave?

      Cast
      Ben Stiller as Tugg Speedman
      Robert Downey, Jr. as Kirk Lazarus
      Jack Black as Jeff Portnoy
      Brandon T. Jackson as Alpa Chino
      Jay Baruchel as Kevin Sandusky
      Nick Nolte as John "Four Leaf" Tayback
      Steve Coogan as Damien Cockburn.
      Danny McBride as Cody Underwood
      Matthew McConaughey as Rick "Pecker" Peck
      Bill Hader as Rob Slolom
      Brandon Soo Hoo as Tran
      Reggie Lee as Byong
      Tom Cruise as Les Grossman

      What I thought
      Tropic Thunder is a film that I saw years ago at the cinema and had pretty much forgotten about it until I bought it for my boyfriend for his birthday. Although I remember liking it, I had forgotten just how funny this film was.

      Tropic Thunder has a fantastic cast which is one of the reasons it is so funny. The main cast of the film being shot is made up of Ben Stiller, Robert Downey, Jr. and Jack Black. Each of these characters are compared to other real actors which in order are, Sylvester Stallone, Russell Crowe and Chris Farley. The three main characters are also joined by Brandon T. Jackson who plays Alpa Chino which is obviously a play on Al Pacino. Each of these characters are so different and are all famous for very different reasons and this is why they are so funny together.

      I haven't been much of a fan of Downey, Jr. in the past but he was actually my favourite out of the whole film. He plays Kirk Lazarus, an Australian method actor. Due to this, he puts everything he can into a role and in this case, he has an operation to make his skin black. Although this character was quite controversial and a bit racist in some ways, he was so funny. It was great to see the times where his put on voice would slip and he'd go back to his Australian accent and forget that he was supposed to be a African-American man. Kirk also gets a lot of stick in the film from Alpa Chino for his fake ways.

      I hate to say it but Stiller and Black really fell short for me in this film, especially in comparison to Downey, Jr. One of the things that this film did was to make up film trailers for the character's past films and to show what kind of actors they were. Jack Black's character was best known for fat man farting films therefore, his character Jeff didn't have much depth to him. While I do love Black as an actor is some of his slightly more serious films, his role in this one was just too silly and I think that any larger actor could have played the part just as well.

      Ben Stiller is a fantastic comedy actor normally but this film, his character, were just too overdone. I know that was the point but I hated him. However, his character Tugg does get some good character development compared with some of the other characters. His performance was so over the top though that I just couldn't like him at all. I found this really unfortunate as I have liked nearly every other film that Ben Stiller has been in before and after this one. This one proves that actors can't ever have a flawless career full of hits.

      The plot was great though and that did make up for some actors being overshadowed when they possibly shouldn't have been. I really enjoyed how the film was set up, with the made up film trailers being shown before the film really started. This gave a great base for the characters in the film and it gave it a real film industry feeling. I also really liked the fact that the Tropic Thunder film was based on a book and that it showed the connection with the writer of the book and the cast and crew of the film. There are some great twists regarding the writer of the book and these were some of the best parts of the film.

      As Tropic Thunder is a big action film, there is loads of action, fights and explosions along the way. The beginning of the film shows just how much this kind of thing costs to do in a film and what can happen should a big expensive scene go wrong. While I do think that this is a film mainly aimed at guys, I found it hilarious and loved it. The action parts of the film do appeal to men more but I think the comedy and the big names in the film will help to appeal to girls at the same time.

      Even with some unfortunate performances, this is a fantastic film and I forgot just how funny it was until I watched it again recently. I will be watching this one over and over again.

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        30.05.2010 22:29
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        I loved this film, I'm sure any comedy fan would too!

        Tropic Thunder is a film which is produced, directed and is also starring Ben Stiller, as the main character, Tugg Speedman. The story also follows his fellow acting friends, who are a very well known cast, including Jack Black, Tom Cruise, Robert Downey Jr. and Steve Coogan, as well as some new roles.

        ----PLOT----
        The plot follows the group of actors joining together to make a movie based on a book written about the Vietnam war. The hook-handed Sgt. Four Leaf Tayback is a Vietnam war veteran and upon seeing the film failing to impress, he gives Damien Cockburn (Steve Coogan), the director of the film, some advice, to put the actors in a real part of Vietnam to get them to really think about the film.

        The troupe of actors land from the helicopter with Damien in the middle of an opening in a forest in Vietnam. Immediately, the director is killed by an old land mine, and upon seeing this, Tugg Speedman, thinks this is just a fake to get them started. This is really one of the funniest parts of the film, as he is completely unaware as he finds the dismembered head of the director, and starts to mess around with it for fun.

        Later on in the film, the rest of the crew decide they are lost and head seperate ways, much to Speedmans annoyance, who ventures off alone into the Vietnamese jungle. Speedman is later captured and taken to a heroin processing plant to be tortured. (Of course, all of this being real while Speedman thinking he is still in a film set). The rest of the actors, coincidentally spot Tugg being tortured outside the set, (while he is shouting "Damien, cut!" Which made me laugh.) The actors decide to go in and help him, with their movie prop blank firing guns.

        The crew successfully save Tugg, but you will have to watch the film to see the various hilarious moments that happen when they are attempting to save him as they really are great.

        ----MY OPINIONS----
        In my opinion, this is a very funny film, it can be watched again and again, especially with its star-studded cast and very clever plot. I would highly recommend it for anyone who enjoys a good comedy.

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        20.03.2010 11:32
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        Read to find out More...:)

        Name: Tropic Thunder
        Director: Ben stiller
        Release Date: 19th September 2008
        Actors: Ben Stiller, Robert Downy jr, Jack, Black, Tom Cruise, Matthew mcConaughey and Steve Coogan

        Summary:
        Tugg Speedman (Stiller), Kirk Lazarus (Downey) and Jeff Portnoy (Black) are top actors, or so they think, that are recruited on the set of a brand new war film: Tropic Thunder. After many failed attempts at filming, the director (Steve Coogan) decides to take them out into the jungle miles away from set and scare them into thinking that its all real- using explosives and other gadgets, so that their expressions are as real as possible. Little do they realise they are in the middle of a real war zone and have to rely on there many years of acting to get them through this adventure.

        My opinion:
        In the first 5 minutes of the film, you'll be in stitches on the floor. I have to say that i have watched a lot of films this year and none of them compare to this, even after my 10th viewing! Is it the amazing line of Actors in the film such as the ones mentioned above, or is it the clear 'stiller' humour involved, or is it because it is probably the most original story line you'll ever see? i don't know, but I do know that you wont regret buying this film ;).

        Alex Tidball
        Aged 15

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          11.03.2010 17:28
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          Overall, pretty funny movie

          I've always been a big fan of Ben Stiller and watched Tropic Thunder on a recommendation about a year ago now on DVD. I've enjoyed most of this movies and this one is pretty good as well although not his best work. It's a comedy with a sinister sort of dark edge to it. It's pretty funny in parts but not laugh out loud all the time like a few of his movies.

          In Tropic Thunder Ben Stiller plays Tugg Speedman which I thought was a fantastic name for a character. He was a huge Hollywood superstar in action movies but his career is fading fast. Together with multi oscar winner Kirk Lazarus, drug addicted comedian Jeff Portnoy, rapper Alpha Chino and lesser known star Kevin Sandusky they are filming a Vietnam War movie. They are a pretty difficult bunch to control and the filming is already behind schedule. The director of the movie is Damien Cockburn played by Steve Coogan. Unfortunately he is unable to control the group enough to get things moving and is in danger of the whole project being shut down by Len Grossman played by Tom Cruise.

          So the people funding the movie came up with a great idea in order to make things more realistic they would take the entire cast out into the jungle and when there drop them in the middle of nowhere. Hidden cameras were rigged up and special effects to go off without the actors knowing so they would be surprised. However when something goes wrong very early on after they land, Tugg thinks it's all part of the director's plans and insists the group continue on and finishing making the movie. Of course not know to them they are not making a movie any more but are in fact in real life danger from the jungle and it's inhabitants. This is where the humour comes in as even though it's pretty violent at times it's hilarious to think that all the time they believe they are still shooting a film.

          Tropic Thunder was always meant to be a satire of Hollywood actors and worked very well. It tries to show in a pretty funny way that some actors will go to extreme lengths to get their careers back on track and play parts if they think it will get them an oscar nomination for example. What more extreme can you get than being dumped in a jungle and could perish at any point.

          The movie takes a bit of time to get going but that's just so the characters can be introduced and the story set up so we know what each of them are about and what their personalities. What I discovered was that most of them had pretty huge ego's which conflicted with each other. Once this is all set up the majority of the movie was focused on events in the jungle after they are dropped off and the fight for survival, even if they do believe they are making a very realistic movie!

          This movie won't be to everyone's tastes and it's a bit different to some of the films Ben Stiller has made in the past but he plays his character very well and is excellent. There is a fair bit of violence, perhaps too much at times, but overall it's a very entertaining movie.

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            02.02.2010 16:09
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            The had some good ideas, but was lacking something.

            Tropic Thunder is a 2008 American comedy film, which was produced and directed by Ben Stiller, who also stars in the movie as Tugg Speedman. Alongside Stiller, Jack Black portrays Jeff Portnoy, and Robert Downey Jr plays Kirk Lazarus.

            PLOT

            The basic plot is that three well known actors, and chosen to act in a Vietnam War film. However, the filming begins, and things aren't going quite as planned. The filming is far behind schedule, and the frustrated director loses patience with the actors. So, as a result, the director decides to send the actors out into the middle of the jungle, without the film crew or set, and continue to play their roles. The actors are assured that there are hidden cameras capturing their every move, so a film can still be made. However, little did the production crew, nor the actors know, that they are on the land of the Flaming Dragon gang, who produce heroin.

            Speedman, portrayed by Stiller, is convinced that the cameras are still rolling, even after finding the head of their director amongst the grass, whilst the others, with the help of Lazarus, slowly begin to realise that they are in a real life war.

            COMEDY

            Despite this being a comedy/spoof film, there weren't really any parts that I found hilarious, but instead there was a kind of on-going low level of humour throughout, which was mainly displayed by the stupidity of the characters such as Speedman, Jeff Portnoy, and even the Flaming Dragon gang when communicating with the film producer.

            I should also mention that Tom Cruise also featured in the film, as the producer of the film they are making, Les Grossman. Despite having a variety of humorous lines, I found the most amusing parts of his appearance to be when he puts on the rap music and starts dancing!

            CONTROVERSY CAUSED

            In the film, we learn about Simple Jack, a character played by Speedman in a previous unsuccessful film. We are shown a clip of this film, earlier on in the movie, and it is evident that the character is meant to have a strong metal disability. This character is referred to as "retarded" during the movie, which I caused offence to many, as well as being made to perform on stage for the Flaming Dragon's entertainment. The Simple Jack character is like a spoof of Rain Man, and Forest Gump.

            The film has also been criticised over racism, with regards to Robert Downey Jr's character, who appears black in the film, but I won't go into that, as I don't see any strong intended racism here.

            CONCLUSION

            Tropic Thunder has a good idea behind it, of that the actors believe they are still acting in a film, where in fact they are in a serious, yet comic situation. There are some aspects of the film that could be questioned, such as how were all the hidden cameras placed in the correct locations (as it turned out the actors were being filmed, for Tropic Blunders, rather than Tropic Thunders which was the name of the intended film they were shooting at the beginning).

            Jack Black is amusing to watch at times, especially when they arrive at the Flaming Dragons camp, and despite the actors making a plan on how to rescue Speedman, he is more interested in getting the drugs.

            I would so it is worth a watch, which will help you make sense of what I have written. For me, I wasn't totally gripped throughout the film, but I can see some people will find aspects of the film hilarious.

            3/5

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            24.01.2010 19:49
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            With great jokes and comedic acting, Tropic Thunder is definitely worth a watch

            I was in mixed thoughts about Tropic Thunder when I first saw the trailer. For one thing I had no idea what it was about. It seemed like something more like a comedy version of the Condemned or Battle Royale or something.

            I didn't see it in the cinema, because I had better things to watch, but then I borrowed my friend's DVD of it, and was really quite surprised.

            The plot follows a group of actors headed by Ben Stiller, Jack Black and Robert Downey Jr as they try to create a film adaptation of war hero Sergeant Four Leaf Tayback's (played by Nick Nolte) novel Tropic Thunder, but with the production way behind time and looking awful director Steve Coogan decides to shoot it in gritty guerrilla style in the actual jungle, shot from cameras in the trees, with pyrotechnics and fake bullets. Everything goes wrong, however, when the director gets blown up by standing on an old land mine and alerts the Flaming Dragon drug corporation and Ben Stiller is kidnapped and taken hostage.

            The film relies heavily on the performance of its actors and that works perfectly. Robert Downey Jr no doubt steals every scene he is in the as the Australian actor who underwent skin pigmentation surgery to play the film's African American sergeant, much to the dislike of the real black guy on the team. The chemistry between the two, and the weedy Jay Baruchel is hilarious.

            There are side roles played by Matthew McConaughey, Danny McBride, Bill Hader and an absolutely brilliant surprise role with Tom Cruise. When Downey Jr isn't in the shot, it's Tom Cruise who steals the show. His role as the producer of the film was sidesplitting, probably one of the best I've seen him in.

            Storywise, there are quite a few plot holes (like how Steve Coogan managed to rig up the forest with cameras with all these drug peddlers everywhere), but it can sort of be explained by them taking the wrong route or something. The story isn't perfect but you kind of overlook it. The film is really funny at the end of the day and that's kind of what it was all about to begin with.

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            06.01.2010 22:11
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            ok but nothing great

            (film only review)

            Introduction

            Tropic Thunder is filled with a star studded cast with the likes of Jack Black, Ben Stiller and Robert Downey Jr in the lead roles so I was expecting something entertaining and funny. It also included the likes of Tom Cruise and Steve Coogan in support roles. It is basically a film that makes fun of big budget Hollywood films especially those depicting war. Stiller directed, wrote and also stars in the film. I find him to be a bit hit and miss in his movies and there are some which are better than others with him. The film was released in 2008 and is classed as a satirical comedy.

            Plot

            The film is a film within a film so at first we are watching them making a film about the Vietnam War. The film they are making is hugely over budget and behind schedule and to make matters worse their novice director is involved in a tragic accident. Whilst they are filming they are attacked by a gang of local drug dealers. They don't realise at first that they are not actors and they are forced to take up the roles they were meant to be playing for real in order to save themselves.


            Opinion

            Tropic Thunder gives you pretty much what you would come to expect of it -- lots of action, fun and actors going all out in parody of big budget Hollywood war films. The main cast do a good job of portraying extremely self-centered, shallow and just hilariously clueless actors.The start was very good and the film kept me entertained and was fun to watch but towards the end it got a bit too over the top and just generally silly. It also became alot like some of the action movies it was actually aiming to make fun of with the big action sequences. The film will provide you with laughs but I don't think it is as good as it wants to be or makes out to be.For me at least it was a bit disappointing and I expected a bit more from it. The plot is pretty simple and not very complicated which you would probably expect but by the end the jokes and general crudeness and sillyness of the film became a bit too much and over the top. It is definitely watchable as a bit of fun but is not anything very special.

            It currently has a rating of 7.2/10 from 93,258 votes on IMDB which I think is a bit on the high side. I would just about give it 3/5 stars.

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              05.01.2010 02:23
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              Thunder of mild applause

              Much can be said about the cast of this movie. Jack Black, Tom Cruise, Steve Coogan, Robert Downey Junior, Ben Stiller and Jay Baruchel. It's packed full and I have named the list on purpose because thats how the film feels, somewhat overwhelmimg and as if it swings from scene to scene, padding and filling the cinematic spaces trying to cram the value for money into the fees that these actors have earned.

              I don't normally formally section off my reviews but...
              Brief synopsis:Film about a group of actors making a film and it all goes wrong. Thats it!

              Despite my obtuseness this actually is quite entertaining though in places and if you forget the fact that it has no point as a movie. It is very long but if you want to kill 2 hours and completely switch your brain off with tasteless comedy then watch this movie. I think the point of this film is not to be serious about movies sometimes and it is more of an attempt by Stiller to send up the movie industry. This movie seems like it should be a 5 minute comedy short at the oscars, but instead Stiller took it on himself to turn this into a film.

              I am ashamed to say that I enjoyed it though even though I probably shouldn't. Oh forgot one Matthew Maconahay. Though there is one more but can't remember.........

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                02.01.2010 18:06
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                Tropic Thunder is a 2008 action comedy which includes Ben Stiller, Robert Downey Jr, Jack Black, Brandon T. Jackson and Jay Baruchel. All the actors do a great job especially Downey Jr who is absolutely hilarious playing Kirk Lazarus.

                The movie is about a bunch of actors filming a Vietnam war movie but when the director gets fed up with the constant whining he decides to throw them into the jungle and decides to film though documentary style. The actors all think that everything is set up but in actual fact the danger is real.

                The movie takes a while before it really picks up as it is quite slow to start. Once it gets going however it is action packed and really funny at times. However there are still moments where it can feel slow.

                As for the DVD extras there is a special two disk edition available but I will not be reviewing that. The DVD comes with two commentaries. The first is called 'filmmakers commentary' which includes Ben Stiller, co-writer Justin Theroux, Producer Stuart Cornfeld, cinematographer John Toll, editor Greg Hayden and production designer Jeff Mann. The second commentary includes Ben Stiller, Jack Black and Robert Downey Jr. An interesting thing about this commentary is that Downey Jr stays in character which is rather entertaining to listen to.

                Overall Tropic Thunder is a good watch if you don't take it seriously (just like with every other comedy). It's not for everybody and its definitely not a must watch but its a fun ride for those who stick though it. I personally had a hard time choosing between giving this movie 3 or 4 starts but in the end I decided to give it 4 starts as I can still rewatch to this day.

                'I can't feel my legs'
                'No No there in a puddle mate, see theirs a puddle right there'

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                  30.10.2009 21:13
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                  Not a winner for me

                  Tropic Thunder (DVD)

                  Description: Genre: Comedy

                  Though this review is for the DVD of Tropic Thunder, I actually went to see this film when it was released at the cinema. I usually like Jack Black so expected this film to be his usual funny, sometimes dark humour.

                  The basic storyline is that a group of somewhat has-been actors are starring in a film about a Vietman war veteran. They are dropped in the Vietnamese jungle, with hidden cameras to record their acting skills. While in the jungle, they encounter a dangerous gang who they mistakenly believe to be other actors.

                  I won't tell you any more in case you do decide to watch it, though if you do, you will probably be able to predict most of what happens within 10 minutes of watching it anyway!

                  They film was so poor that it made me cringe, it was definitely the worst film I have watched for a while. Along with Jack Black, the cast is made up of Nick Nolte, Ben Stiller, Robert Downey Jr and Steve Coogan. They film appears to try too hard for laughs, contains gory and over the top scenes of violence and instead of the humour being risque, it just seems a little distasteful and predictable.

                  Definitely not a film that I would recommend, I struggled to watch it until the end, it was a poor effort from all concerned in my opinion. If you like Jack Black, you will probably still not like this film!

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                    17.10.2009 16:06
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                    If shock humours not your thing avoid this. If it is, you'll be rolling in the ailses

                    My girlfriend claims that she cannot sleep during the day... this was until we tried to watch Tropic Thunder one Sunday afternoon. Within the first 45 mins I could see the zzzz's coming from her. It is understandable as this film, as you may imagine from Ben Stiller, only appeals to certain people. She's not one of them, I'm not sure if I am either.

                    Tropic Thunder is a satirical look at Hollywood with an all-star cast. Stiller stars alongside Jack Black and Robert Downey Jnr as three Hollywood stars in a Vietnam epic. Things are going badly with the film and the director (Steve Coogan) decides that the only way to get a real performance from his actors is to shoot it like a real guerrilla war film. Predictably, situations change and things turn from fiction to reality and they end up being in real danger.

                    The cast for this is exceptional and they all do their bit to add to the laughs. The 3 leads are good but special praise must go to Downey for his portrayal of an Australian Hollywood darling playing an African American soldier. A joke that for some may be pushing the boundaries of comedy too much but if one leaves the soap box for a moment, is actually a very funny portrayal.

                    Equal praise must go to Tom Cruise who is almost unrecognisable. I won't say more but the film is almost worth it for his performance. Matthew McConaughey and Nick Nolte also get an in on the laughs as a Hollywood agent and Vietnam vet respectively. Nolte is as grizzly as you can imagine but hilariously sends himself up with the stereotype.

                    The only casting disappointment is that little is made of Steve Coogan's talents playing the British director. The part just feels a bit limp and it would have been nicer to see Coogan get a juicier role and chance to flex his comic muscles.

                    Where some may object to this film is that some of the humour is borderline offensive such as the previously mentioned Downey Jr character and the racial stereotyping. Also Stiller's character playing a 'retard' for an Academy Award nod may (and has) offend. It's these and other shock value gags that may make this not for some people I suppose including my girlfriend. I don't think it's really my thing either but can see the merit in it and that others will find it uproariously funny.

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                      12.10.2009 00:08
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                      Give it a miss

                      Tropic Thunder was filmed in 2007 on the Hawaiian island of Kaua'i, and funnelled more than $60 million to the local economy as a result.

                      Sadly, this is really the only positive thing at all that I can say about this film.

                      The trouble with openly disliking Tropic Thunder is that you lay yourself open to accusations of being humourless, of being too PC... of really taking yourself too seriously. But the fact remains - it is a long way from being a good film. Apart from the mumbling dialogue, the lacklustre script, the lack of any continuity in the action, and the really poor acting - my main issues with the film were about taste. Ben Stiller directed and wrote a film that was intended to be a satire on commercial cinema's misappropriation of black experience and patronising attitude to people with learning disabilities. This satire was lost on a large section of the US population, as disability rights protesters picketed the opening of the film over the repeated use of the word 'retard' and the negative depiction of a character with a learning disability.

                      The plot centres around a group of actors who have all seen better days, and who are taking part in a film which re-creates the heroic story of Vietman war veteran John "Four Leaf" Tayback (Nick Nolte). The five actors, led by Tugg Speedman (Ben Stiller), Jeff Portnoy (Jack Black), and Kirk Lazarus (Robert Downey Jr) are dropped in the middle of the Vietnamese jungle by incompetent director Damien Cockburn (Steve Coogan) to indulge in some method acting as they are abandoned to face special effects and simulated dangers on their own, with only secret hidden cameras to witness their progress. Naturally enough, when the group of actors bump into the dangerous drug producing Flaming Dragon gang, they mistake them for fellow actors, with 'hilarious' results.

                      The combination of this promising storyline and a rake of famous actors should have been a recipe for success. Unfortunately the whole film lacks the essential subtlety and talent from both script writer and director to carry off the satirical element of the film. Each actor represents a certain Hollywood stereotype: Tugg Speedman is the macho actor with bulging muscles, whose career has taken a downturn after his poor interpretation of Simple Jack, a man with learning difficulties, in his last film. The audience sees many flashbacks to this role, where the 'retard' is portrayed as a stammering goon, with sticking out teeth and mop-like hair. Tugg makes it very clear that he had to work hard to play the role of a 'retard' and reiterates time after time that he had to believe that he was 'dumb, an imbecile, a moron, and stupid'.

                      Jeff Portnoy represents the overweight comic actor, who relies solely on loud farting to get the laughs. Jack Black's portrayal of this character seems to rely solely on using falsetto shrieks and blundering around in a pair of white underpants. The assumption that this feminised performance is an indication of his sexual preferences is confirmed as he rather graphically offers to perform oral sex on one of the other actors, despite that actor's protestations that he 'just likes pussy'.

                      Kirk Lazarus is perhaps the most difficult role to accept- he plays the blond Australian who feels the need to undergo a surgical skin blackening operation to play the role of Sergeant Osiris. This, together with his black curly wig and mumbling jivetalk could have been the death knell of the whole film and was a huge risk to take. Surprisingly though, it is the one bit of satirical comedy that hits the mark - Robert Downey's pastiche of every black stereotype making it clear that the role is very much tongue in cheek. One of the very few moments of real comedy come from this role, and the outrage of the genuinely black actor who recoils in indignation every time Lazarus identifies himself as a 'brother'.

                      Politics apart, the fact remains that this film just isn't funny enough. Jack Black fails to raise a laugh and is just plain irritating; Ben Stiller plays the role with his usual wide eyes and goofy expression, and although this has been used to excellent comic effect in previous films it just doesn't do the job in this film. At times it seems that the film picks up pace, and you can ignore the silliness and poor performances, but then everything slows down and the main flow of action lost in sub plots and diversions - and you have the time to stop and wonder why you are still sitting in front of a film that is undeniably confusing and dull.

                      Tropic Thunder is rated a 15. The very first scenes contain some very gory violence which includes spilling entrails and spurting blood. Although this is intended to be a very funny scene, I think it would upset many younger people.

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                        01.10.2009 14:57
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                        worth a watch if you like Tom Cruise

                        This film is one of the latest Ben Stiller films and as a fan of his had to watch it. The cast reads like an A list of american comedy with Stiller, Jack Black and Steve Coogan. But the A list does not end there as it also includes Matthew Mconaughey, Robert Downy Jr and unbelievably, Tom Cruise! With this cast it promised to be a good watch, or so I thought.
                        The story centres around a phony story from Vietnam being made into a film. the cast of the film are all quirky, Black is a drug addict, Downy Jr is an Australian that goes through skin pigmentaion treatment to play a black soldier, Stiller plays the more serious actor that is quite method in his approach and Mconaughey plays Stiller's very materialistic agent.
                        While on the shoot for the film, the cast are placed in the middle of nowhere in order to gain some insight into the war experience, they do not realise that the director is killed and they are out there alone. They assume the things that happen to them are all film stunts, they do not realise that a drug gang are stalking them, ready to capture and torture them.
                        Once they realise this they have to put their best acting talents to the test in order to save Stiller's character. Here, the "geek" turns out to be the hero and we discover the "heart throb" is Gay. Very cliched.
                        This film should have been really funny with the cast it has but for me, it was a let down. Some parts were good and raised a smile, mainly Stiller lines, but on the whole I was disapointed with it. The best thing for me was seeing Tom Cruise in a role I would never have imagined him doing, he's really quite a good dancer too!

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                          08.09.2009 16:59
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                          if you like Ben Stiller comedys you'll love Tropic Thunder

                          Tropic Thunder is one of the newest efforts from Ben Stiller, set as a film within a film, this mad comedy movie is a great watch.
                          The story takes place with the shooting of a war film, the actors are too premadonna-ish so the director takes them deep into the jungle away from their trailors and the film crew to film a more realistic looking film. However after a small acident with the director the four men (Stiller, Black, Downey Jr. and the other guy) are left to find their way through the jungle alone, still under the belief that they are being filmed.
                          from the fake trailers at the start of the film to the last dance at the end this film is star studded and real funny.
                          Possibly one of the best people in this film is Robert Downey Jr. who plays a australian who has had pigment alteration to make himself in to a black man for the part in the film, this is a constant source of humor thoughout the film.
                          With appearances from many big names from Toby Mcguire to Tom Cruise this is a must see movie.

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