This blog is now retired. My new site is at: Predictably Irrational.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Movie Review: Tropic Thunder

I decided to watch this as part of my Oscar Nominated Movie Watching Goal.

When this first came out, I was appalled by the previews. A white guy playing a black man? Talk about being politically incorrect.

And I'm not a big fan of Robert Downey Jr. I mean, he is awesome in one of my favorite movies, Home for the Holidays. But I didn't like that he could be such a fuck-up and Hollywood give him accolades for his comeback. He was a FUCK UP. And then with open arms, Hollywood welcomes him back. Oscar nominations made me break my protest of his work.

And then there's Tom Cruise. CAN NOT STAND HIM.

And while I think Ben Stiller is hilarious, his movies tend to fall flat for me.

But Robert Downey Jr. is nominated for his supporting role in this movie and thus, it was my intention to watch it for my Oscar-goal.

It was on pay-per-view so when I started it, the first thing that came on was a commercial for Booty Sweat. It didn't click that this was a fake trailer. I thought it was a Pepsi commercial, to be honest. But I thought I heard the guy rap about pussy dripping down a girl's leg. I was so stunned that I swear I made it sound like PEPSI dripping down...until I thought, why would Pepsi drip down anyone's legs and why would Pepsi make that a commercial?

The subsequent ads made me come back to reality and figure out that this was all part of the movie..

So with that said, Tropic Thunder is extremely crass, offensive and nasty. And I enjoyed every bit of it. I was so surprised that this movie, one that I abhorred when it was released, actually made me laugh...and gag...and raise my eyebrows...and be entertained by it all.

It certainly isn't an Oscar-worthy movie. Not even close. But it ranks up there is the class of off-color, crude movies. The other one I liked that I put in that genre? 40 year old virgin. And another? Kevin Smith movies, like Clerks and Chasing Amy.

And it took me a few minutes to figure out who Robert Downey Jr. was in the movie. And yes, he is very good in it. Tom Cruise? Also good because he played so out-of-character for any role he has ever had. I still think he's a dick and I still plan to refuse to see his movies, but man, he really showed a side of him I never thought I'd see.

It made me wonder how these actors, including the others, read this script and thought "I'm going to do it!" Quite risky, IMO.

But the movie is very good if you are not easily insulted and have a taste for crude and rude, and Ben Stiller movies.

The premise will be a dead giveaway so if you plan to watch it, don't read any further. I watched it without really knowing what the movie was about since I didn't care to see it. I prefer that method.

Tropic Thunder is about a has-been action movie star doing a movie based on a book by a Vietnam Vet. Ben Stiller plays this star, Tugg Speedman.

Robert Downey Jr. plays an Aussie white actor who plays a black man in the movie. He is pretty darn good all the way down to the way he talks.

Brandon T. Jones is the real black man in the movie (the rap star who raps the Booty Sweat song) named Alpa Chino (love that!). And to offset the somewhat offensiveness of Robert D. as a black man, there is strife between his character and Robert D.

Jack Black is in it and while funny, not so much in the forefront as he usually is. And his regular Jack Black self so nothing "new".

The movie that they are making is losing money and Nick Nolte's character (the guy that wrote the book the movie is based on) and the director decide to try to get these actors out in the jungle and force them to _feel_ what being in war might really be like.

However, some things happen and they find themselves out in the middle of nowhere, with no one filming. Well, Tugg Speedman still thinks the cameras are rolling and is completely clueless that shit has hit the fan.

So it becomes a real 'war' story and it goes from there. It's a parody and it's funny. It'll be quite a shock to me if Robert D. walks away with an Oscar on this one.

But let me see the other flicks to see if I can really believe that one...

, I hate/have to say. Oscar-worthy? Not so sure about that one.

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