This statement might be sacrilegious in some circles, but I thought Tropic Thunder was as funny as Zoolander--or at least pretty darn close. It might not necessarily be as quotable or as creative, but it's still a barrel of laughs.
*Warning* some of the links contain [a lot of] profanity
Anything that makes fun of actors or Hollywood is golden. I'm so tired of pretensious actors thinking they're the ones who know how to run the world (darn that Film Actors Guild!). All of the major actors in this film are making fun of other actors (and their stupid films). For those of you that might refuse to see it because it uses the word "retarded," you have no clue what the movie is about. Just like male models in Zoolander, the actors portrayed in Tropic Thunder are ridiculously vein and stupid. Ben Stiller and Robert Downey, Jr.'s characters were both [mis]using the term "retarded," and it did was display their lust for Oscars as well as their it's-all-about-me attitude. The people that come off as intellectually disabled are the actors, not the mentally challenged character (Simple Jack) portrayed. To say that Stiller is deplorable because he says "retarded" is to say that he did a disservice to coal miners ("black lung") or homeless people ("derelict") in Zoolander... a clear misunderstaning and misinterpretation of the overall point of the film.
The cast is terrific here. Ben Stiller had the trifecta: [co-]writer, director, actor. Robert Downey, Jr. is almost unrecognizable (and the exchanges between he and Alpa Chino are priceless), and he's some sort of Russell Crowe character. Jack Black does an Eddie-Murphy-on-drugs character, and it's also really funny. Tom Cruise's bellicose billionaire producer role is outstanding! Everything he says is hyper-masculine and over the top, which reminds me of the best character from Burn After Reading.
If you rent this movie and have extra time, watch the "actors commentary" with Stiller, RDJr., and Jack Black. Classy.
Final Grade: A
Blurb: Definitely the funniest movie in 2008.