UK Critics Consensus: Tropic Thunder Soldiers On; Then She Found Me Is Found Out

Plus, Unrelated Is A Relative Triumph, but Zombie Strippers Bares Its Rotten Bits

by | September 19, 2008 | Comments

This week’s UK releases, expect big laughs as Ben Stiller’s star-studded Hollywood satire comedy blasts onto our screens in Tropic Thunder. The sound of a big old biological clock ticking away heralds two maternally yearning movies onto our screen, Helen Hunt’s directorial debut Then She Found Me, and another directorial debut, this time for British director Joanna Hogg, with Unrelated. Finally, a horror comedy featuring the geek nirvana coupling of zombies and strippers, called unsurprisingly Zombie Strippers, crawls (albeit scantily clad) onto British screens this week. But what did the UK critics have to say?

With Judd Apatow and Will Ferrell seemingly holding a duopoly on big American comedy flicks for the past year, Ben Stiller storms into the fray with his star-studded (Jack Black, Robert Downey Jr, Steve Coogan) passion piece, Tropic Thunder, which he not only starred and directed, but also wrote and co-produced. Steve Coogan plays the director of a war movie, who unwittingly leads his cast of prima-donnas into a real life warzone. Stiller is Tugg Speedman, the earnest action star, Jack Black is drug crazed comedian Jeff Portnoy, but the big laughs belong to Robert Downey Jr as Kirk Lazarus, the method actor who undergoes skin-pigmentation surgery to replace a black actor in the fictional film within the film. UK critics were divided; most enjoyed its early laughs, but many felt the jokes ran out of steam as the movie descended into an all-action film, funnily enough, the kind of action film Tropic Thunder had spent the first half aiming its satirical barbs at. There are enough laughs and classy action to keep it Certified Fresh at 83% on the Tomatometer.

After winning the Academy Award for Best Actress for her role in As Good As It Gets, Helen Hunt has struggled to regain her form with middling roles in middling films, but she turns her hand to directing for Then She Found Me Out. Hunt plays April Epner, a thirty something wife, with a biological clock ticking away, who is dumped by her husband, only to fall into the arms of housewives’ favourite Colin Firth‘s character Frank. Bette Midler plays the role of Hunt’s mother with gusto, but dodgy cinematography and a dull script caused the critics to dismiss the movie, though not to dismiss Helen Hunt’s future career as a director. Critics all agree that Hunt shows enough promise behind the camera, to go on to prove that she can do better next time round. Then She Found Me currently stands a middling 51% on the Tomatometer.

British director Joanna Hogg earned her directorial spurs helming classic British television staples such as Eastenders and Casualty, but her first feature Unrelated has been heralded by the UK critics for its assured and classy direction. This enigmatic drama centres on British holidaymaker Anna (Kathryn Worth), who escapes an unhappy marriage, and finds solace in the company of younger holidaymakers, whilst lamenting her decision to not have children of her own. The critics lauded Hogg for her ability to make a British movie unburdened with the sensibilities usually de-rigueur in most British rom-coms. Definitely a name for the future, Unrelated is currently at an impressive 85% on the Tomatometer.

Zombie Strippers provided an excuse for most publications to publish pictures of the scantily clad, self proclaimed Queen Of Porn, Jenna Jameson this week, but despite the flesh on show, and schlocky premise of stripping zombies, the movie itself has been widely derided by the UK critics for it’s cheap production values, hammy acting, and poor scriptwriting. There are some laughs to be had in the outrageous premise, but not enough to keep it afloat. Camp and gory sexploitation flick Zombie Strippers reviews are as rotten as the zombie strippers rotten flesh, and it currently stands at 40% on the Tomatometer.

Also worth checking out this week

The Girl Who Leapt Through Time – An imaginative and thoughtfully engaging anime film with a highly effective visual design. This coming-of-age comedy drama has mad inventiveness to spare. 87% on the Tomatometer.

The Chaser — A frantic and taut Korean serial killer thriller. One classy, if bloody and messy, gut wrencher of a movie. 82% on the Tomatometer.

Linha De Passe – A gritty portrayal of modern day family life in Sau Paolo, with vividly drawn characters and an uncompromising resolution. 73% on the Tomatometer.

Quote of the Week

“Watching the Korean film The Chaser is like chewing diamonds — you know there’s something of value in there but mostly it’s just a mess of pain and blood.”

Wendy Ide, The Times.

Tag Cloud

slashers Women's History Month Oscars 2016 doctor who E3 spy thriller Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt social media Rocky Turner Classic Movies GLAAD breaking bad Infographic Mindy Kaling Marvel Television Trailer OWN YA Calendar CW Seed canceled TV shows 20th Century Fox versus diversity Chilling Adventures of Sabrina space Columbia Pictures RT21 Lifetime harry potter American Society of Cinematographers streaming GIFs 2019 TBS television sequel adaptation tv talk unscripted Video Games Emmys Classic Film AMC sports travel Biopics Emmy Nominations Western cinemax Netflix Writers Guild of America Reality Competition Fox News Creative Arts Emmys Pirates Cartoon Network spanish language CMT MCU Spring TV transformers Lionsgate anime Opinion Universal comiccon FXX finale animated Masterpiece FOX Bravo Showtime blaxploitation Election Winter TV Holidays docudrama screenings discovery 2018 joker facebook witnail green book Esquire IFC cats Set visit cancelled medical drama zero dark thirty DC streaming service true crime comics Peacock YouTube Captain marvel PBS Photos Valentine's Day cults talk show renewed TV shows spinoff cops independent Mudbound Marathons Warner Bros. HBO Mary Tyler Moore crime drama police drama MSNBC Hallmark quibi Sony Pictures political drama TV Land game show richard e. Grant Tumblr aliens Disney Channel Acorn TV Disney streaming service Trivia Countdown ABC south america video USA PaleyFest werewolf composers Heroines Disney+ Disney Plus YouTube Premium Watching Series what to watch TLC History Crackle Comedy ESPN cartoon 007 Lucasfilm cancelled television binge Star Trek Syfy BBC America X-Men Comedy Central Rocketman Tomatazos Lifetime Christmas movies Amazon revenge movies casting Holiday TCA 2017 President Super Bowl Pride Month comic E! justice league 2017 Polls and Games mockumentary NYCC historical drama HBO Max Pet Sematary thriller Ellie Kemper Hallmark Christmas movies El Rey Best and Worst kids Superheroe Sundance ITV Logo Hulu Action IFC Films Interview Cosplay miniseries Podcast Marvel Studios First Look SundanceTV APB indie Spike teaser Netflix Christmas movies 2015 game of thrones dceu science fiction crime thriller Schedule biography VICE TNT festivals zombies 45 San Diego Comic-Con Sneak Peek BBC Amazon Prime Video boxoffice A&E Comic Book stand-up comedy period drama disaster First Reviews vampires The Arrangement SXSW ghosts Martial Arts latino elevated horror New York Comic Con TIFF book Animation Red Carpet Box Office canceled A24 Summer Apple TV+ spider-man TCM serial killer theme song cancelled TV shows VH1 golden globes cars Superheroes toy story anthology LGBT RT History DirecTV Family Reality Ghostbusters MTV Sundance Now WarnerMedia Starz Apple TV Plus dc Musical Nominations ABC Family Grammys Film Festival batman robots Brie Larson spain DC Universe Nickelodeon foreign Shudder hist Comics on TV Star Wars Pop Epix DGA dramedy based on movie crossover halloween strong female leads DC Comics zombie NBC Song of Ice and Fire Food Network war Cannes cooking Ovation Television Academy Amazon Prime The Walking Dead singing competition Awards Tour Sci-Fi christmas movies Kids & Family psychological thriller romance Mystery Winners Apple Turner Spectrum Originals mutant Britbox TV renewals rotten movies we love sitcom Musicals TruTV Paramount National Geographic Paramount Network Tarantino The Witch nature Vudu Stephen King award winner Pixar jamie lee curtis Mary Poppins Returns blockbuster Crunchyroll Quiz children's TV Awards CBS natural history Mary poppins Shondaland Thanksgiving Anna Paquin Disney GoT adventure Fantasy Adult Swim Certified Fresh free movies CBS All Access Character Guide YouTube Red psycho TCA crime Premiere Dates Teen See It Skip It The Purge Toys FX Chernobyl Marvel Country technology Horror WGN LGBTQ Nat Geo cancelled TV series Rock Freeform romantic comedy The CW 24 frames Year in Review Disney Plus Fall TV 21st Century Fox Rom-Com series Extras Trophy Talk Walt Disney Pictures ratings Black Mirror politics Drama CNN dragons SDCC Music hispanic Elton John Dark Horse Comics 71st Emmy Awards Arrowverse Film Binge Guide supernatural Christmas BET TV USA Network