Tom Cruise’s ‘Tropic Thunder’ Cameo Is Not Actually All That Funny

Photo: Photos: Courtesy of Dreamworks; Getty Images

As you may have read here, here, here, and everywhere else, Tom Cruise — previously thought to be a batshit, couch-hopping, past-his-prime albatross who was single-handedly sullying the United Artists name — is resuscitating his career! Not with his eye-patch-wearing lead in Valkyrie, but with an uncredited (but endlessly hyped) bit part in Ben Stiller’s Tropic Thunder, as balding, foul-mouthed film exec Les Grossman. Everybody who's seen it says he’s going to be a star again! "For two hours," sighs Fox's Roger Friedman, "all that other stuff associated with him floats away, and you just get to enjoy that kid we met such a long time ago."

Or not. Not to get all spoilery (which apparently is okay with studios when you praise their product), but Cruise just isn’t that funny in Tropic Thunder. Sure, he wears a fat suit and spoofs a Sumner Redstone–ish blowhard who likes to yell. But a cussing Tom Cruise is not really a shock — after all, nobody thinks Tom Cruise is exactly level-headed. We’ve all seen him beady-eyed and angry on the Today show, attacking anyone who’s ever taken psychiatric meds. It's not like you never thought he had it in him.

As you may have read here, here, here, and everywhere else, Tom Cruise — previously thought to be a batshit, couch-hopping, past-his-prime albatross who was single-handedly sullying the United Artists name — is resuscitating his career! Not with his eye-patch-wearing lead in Valkyrie, but with an uncredited (but endlessly hyped) bit part in Ben Stiller’s Tropic Thunder, as balding, foul-mouthed film exec Les Grossman. Everybody who's seen it says he’s going to be a star again! "For two hours," sighs Fox's Roger Friedman, "all that other stuff associated with him floats away, and you just get to enjoy that kid we met such a long time ago."

But here's hoping that he wears the eye patch well. —Logan Hill

Earlier: The Summer of Brownface