DVDpendence .


With Ben Stiller, Jack Black, Robert Downey Jr., Nick Nolte, Steve Coogan, Matthew McConaughey, Tom Cruise

Written by Ben Stiller, Justin Theroux & Etan Cohen
Directed by Ben Stiller

Ben Stiller goes all the way with this Hollywood spoof. He plays Tugg Speedman, a popular action movie star whose popularity is starting to dwindle. So, he takes on a Vietnam War theme in an attempt to gain some more credibility (especially since his action-hero departure in playing a mentally challenge man was not met favourably). Other members of his cast include a drug addicted fart comedy star (Jack Black) and an award winning Australian method acting genius (Robert Downy Jr.). In order to grasp the reality and horror of the war, the director is convinced by the writer of the book on which this movie is based, to take them into the Vietnamese jungle and shoot it guerilla style. But, what they enter is drug manufacturing territory with real bad guys and real bullets – but they think its part of the deal, special-FX and all!
With some hilarious moments including hammed-up clichés and hints at movies like Platoon and Apocalypse Now, they pull off a ludicrous comedy which often head into bad taste territory. The movie opens with hilarious fake trailers of each of the actors, and Downey, Jr. steals the show as the Aussie who is so into his craft that he lives his characters to the extent that he had his skin pigmented to play the role of the black soldier. He got nominated for an Oscar and would’ve been brilliant had he won.
Smaller cameo roles by McConaughey (as Speedman’s adamant agent) and Cruise (as the ruthless studio boss) are priceless, especially Cruise who goes in a hilariously out-of-character direction no-one would’ve expected, as the bloated, bald, hairy, cussing (and dancing!) producer.
DVD extras include cast commentary; making-of featurettes like the heavy duty explosions; the shooting of the opening battle scene; the Hearts Of Darkness style fake documentary trailer; make-up tests with Tom Cruise; a look at the lead cast members; and a funny MTV movie awards clip of Stiller, Black and Downey, Jr. attempting to make a viral video to promote Tropic Thunder.

4 / B
- Paul Blom

1 2 3 4 5 6
A - B - C

6 - Volcanic
5 - Blistering
4 - Hot
3 - Smolder
2 - Room Temp.
1 - Fizzled
0 - Extinguished

A: Multiple Viewing Potential
B: Deserves Another Look
C: Once Should Suffice

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