MOVIE REVIEW: Tropic Thunder

The new kings of comedy

have made their impact felt and for the old dogs in the game, namely

Ben Stiller, his smart-alecky comedic attempt to reclaim the crown, Tropic Thunder, undeniably provokes a few laughs, but mainly one that comes after a nervous cough. The

star-studded farce makes every effort to be outrageous and

controversial (see the blackfaced Robert Downey, Jr. below), as it

pokes fun at Hollywood and its stereotype of self-indulged, spoiled

drug-abusing thespians. But in Tropic Thunder, Stiller and

Jack Black find themselves outshined by Iron Man in a pretty startling

and out-there role as Australian Academy Award winner Kirk Lazarus.The plot is simple as it is a parody of shining stars and their faults.

The gags are exaggerated to prove such a point. Black's comedic timing

does little to save him as Jeff "Fats" Portnoy, a

funnyman-turned-druggie. Black's usually spastic antics are co-signed

by the fact that he's such a physical character. In Tropic Thunder, though, Black lacks that same punch that he's known for in solo turns in films like School of Rock and Nacho Libre.Think of Tropic Thunder as a Rambo-ized version of Zoolander,

but without the gut-busting laughs and cathchphrases. Stiller's

co-writers, Justin Theroux and Ethan Cohen, pen a nutty tone with each

character a stereotype of some sort. If Jack Black is the king of

flactulence, Robert Downey, Jr. is the Oscar darling, Brandon T.

Jackson plays the seriously-delusional-aspiring hip-hop guy du jour,

Alpa Chino. Stiller saves himself best for last as the action-adventure

superstar Tugg Speedman...To read the rest of the review, click here