The Frat Pack is back this summer presenting us with a big budget, no holds bar, war comedy blockbuster that is Tropic Thunder. Featuring a star studded cast, impressive effects and some comical doses of pop culture, Tropic Thunder is pure popcorn munching zaniness that most can enjoy, I have a few complaints but I can’t deny the brainless fun that ensues while watching this film.
Ben Stiller, Jack Black, Robert Downey Jr. these are names that I think are reason enough to check out this splendor of gore, retard jokes and humor of the bodily variety. If I have to give props to anyone, it’s got to be the over-the-top jive of Robert Downey Jr. who pretty much has all the best lines in the movie. I got the impression that Jack Black was just told to act like Jack Black for 100 something minutes, and as for Ben Stiller, who’s been pretty hit or miss his whole career, here he can be annoying but he certainly has his moments. Though let’s not forget the talents of some of the actors filling in the smaller roles. I’ve recently found myself becoming a fan of the up and coming Danny McBride and here he was probably one of my favorite characters. Nick Nolte is always suitable for playing an intimidating old guy and as for Jay Baruchel, Brandon T. Jackson and Steve Coogan, well their all fine. Tom Cruise is certainly creating a lot of buzz for this film, but in the long run I think they should of kept is role to a one scene cameo as I had trouble finding him funny as the film advanced. Just something about a fat film executive dancing doesn’t seem funny to me at all, more of embarrassed for having witnessed it.
References to pop culture are huge part of this film and though I didn’t always find them humorous I appreciated the effort. Parodying action movie stars, comedians like Eddie Murphy, overly dramatic character actors, or rapper turned movie stars is a cute idea, but not always that clever. The film of course opens with some fake trailers which are mildly funny but far from quality writing. Most of the best humor actually comes from the performances of this energetic cast, and I think they could of benefited from showing us a little less of this fictional Hollywood and a little more of these characters struggle. I know that may sound kind of snooty but I truly believe that if this film had tighter direction, and less ideas floating around it could of been something for the ages.
I don’t think this was my favorite summer comedy, that would probably go to the stoner comedy Pineapple Express but it delivers on what’s most important for any movie and that’s full on entertainment. I have no idea if this film could either grow on me or seem even stupider in the future, but until than it’s alright in my book and certainly worth seeing, check it out if you like to laugh.