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Tropic Thunder

From Internet Movie Firearms Database - Guns in Movies, TV and Video Games
Revision as of 18:43, 22 August 2021 by LJ (talk | contribs) (→‎AKM: add image of Jeff Imada)
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Tropic Thunder (2008)

The following weapons were used in the film Tropic Thunder:


Colt Gold Cup National Match

One of the Guerrillas is seen holding a Colt Gold Cup National Match 1911 pistol on Cody (Danny McBride) when he flies a chopper to their Heroin base and Portnoy is seen armed with it before Tran kicks it out of his hand, implying it is a rubber prop.

Colt Gold Cup National Match M1911A1 Series 70 - .45 ACP.
A guerrilla holds a Colt Gold Cup on Cody.
Tran kicks the Colt Gold Cup out of Portnoy's hand.


Lazarus is seen using an M1911A1 as his sidearm in the film and uses it several times. Portnoy later gets his hands on it and uses it to hold Tran (Brandon Soo Hoo) hostage.

Colt M1911A1 - .45 ACP.
Lazarus holds his M1911A1 on Chino when he tells him not to rescue Speedman, all of which is acting.
"Peak A Boo! I See You!"Lazarus fires his M1911A1 behind his back, in the 'over the top' sequence at the beginning of the movie.
"I'm just like a little boy, playin' with his dick when he's nervous."
Portnoy holds Tran hostage with Lazarus' M1911A1.
Portnoy holds Tran hostage with the M1911A1.
Portnoy aims the M1911A1 at Tran.
Portnoy tries to put clothes on, giving Tran time to disarm him of his M1911A1.

In a deleted scene, Tran takes the M1911A1 from Portnoy and tries to shoot him with it, only to discover it is loaded with blanks.

"You die now, fatty!"
Tran fires the M1911A1 Portnoy. Even at this range, blanks are considered dangerous, however from this shot, it appears that Tran is aiming away from Pornoy, yet another trick of the camera.
Tran looks at the M1911A1 in frustration.

Beretta 92FS

Martin Lawrence is seen armed with a Beretta 92FS on a movie poster for a film he did with Speedman.

Beretta 92FS - 9x19mm.
Martin Lawrence with a Beretta 92FS.

Glock 17

While interrogating Speedman, Byong (Reggie Lee) has a 3rd gen Glock 17 in his holster.

Glock 17 3rd gen - 9mm.
Byong with a 3rd gen Glock 17 in his holster.


AR-15 Sporter II Carbine

Tugg Speedman (Ben Stiller), along with various other characters, uses a 16" barreled AR-15 Sporter II Carbine throughout the film, which is anachronistic for Vietnam. The original AR-15 Carbine was an SP1 (sold between 1978-1985)), so there was no forward Assist on the upper receiver. Stiller's gun is the A1 version, or what Colt called the "Sporter II version" in U.S. sales. The Colt Model 653 based weapons came after 1973. He should be using an XM177 variation or the original AR-15 to be accurate to the era. It may be an homage to the movie Platoon since the characters of Barnes (Tom Berenger) and Elias (Willem Dafoe) used the Philippine export Colt Model 653 rifles. This film uses what is available in the United States, which happens to be the Sporter II carbine, since most of the movie was filmed in Los Angeles and Hawaii.

AR-15 Sporter II Carbine with 20 round magazine - 5.56x45mm.
Colt Sporter II Carbine with 30 round magazine - 5.56x45mm.
Lazarus (Robert Downey Jr.) fires his Sporter II Carbine during the opening sequence.
Jeff Portnoy (Jack Black) playing the role of "Fats" fires his Sporter II Carbine during the opening sequence.
Speedman with his Sporter II Carbine.
Someone scratched the finish off the Sporter II receiver very badly.
Speedman fires his Sporter II at the enemy guerrillas, unaware they are real enemies, and them unaware he is firing blanks.
Speedman (Ben Stiller) grandstands as he fires his blanks at the enemy.
"Lets load and lock."
Speedman fires his Sporter II into the air to stop the argument between Lazarus and Alpa Chino (Brandon T. Jackson).
"Lets go get those Viet Congs." In keeping with the satire of 'action films', Speedman seems inclined to rack the action on the Sporter II even when the gun is already chambered.
Speedman with his Sporter II.
"Here's my motherfuckin' farm!"
Lazarus fires two Sporter II Carbines (loaded with blanks) akimbo style at the Guerrillas, to force them to the ground and give up their live weapons.
"I'm a lead farmer, motherfucker!".
When Lazarus tosses Chino one of his Sporter II carbines, it is clearly a rubber prop cast from one fitted with a 30 round magazine.
The character Chino, being a famous 'rapper', tends to hold his Sporter II carbine on the Guerrillas, gangster style.
Chino pulls the empty magazine from his Sporter II.


Kevin Sandusky (Jay Baruchel) and Alpo Chino (Brandon T. Jackson) both carry XM16E1 noted by their A1-style forward assists and three pronged flash hiders.

XM16E1 - 5.56x45mm.
Sandusky and Chino with their XM16E1 rifles.
Sandusky with his XM16E1. Note the older style three prong flash reducer and good trigger discipline; Sandusky displays good trigger discipline throughout the film, in keeping with his character generally being more sensible than his fellow actors.
Sandusky takes cover from guerrilla fire with his XM16E1 rifle in hand.
Chino with his XM16E1 as guerrillas shoot at him.
Sandusky hides as Lazarus tries to speak Mandarin to the guerrilla leader, Tran (Brandon Soo Hoo).
Sandusky searches the huts for Speedman.
Chino, again, holds his XM16E1 gangster style.
Chino fires his XM16E1.


North Vietnamese soldiers are seen armed with AKM rifles during the opening "Hot LZ" scene, one of which most notably disembowels Sandsuky with his bayonet. In real life, it would be more accurate for the Vietnamese to use Soviet AK-47s or Chinese Type 56 rifles, the Chinese copy of the AK. An AKM at this time in history is an anachronism, Hanoi didn't get AKMs from the Soviet Union in any sort of numbers until 1972 and it would take at least a year for guns to filter down to the troops in the field. Even during the fall of Saigon in 1975 there are virtually no AKMs seen in wartime photographs of front line NVA units. At the point depicted in the movie within a movie, 99% of the guns in the field were Chinese Type 56s or vintage AK-47s. Later the guerrilla soldiers can be seen armed with AKM rifles, which appear to be Egyptian Maadi ARM rifles, one of the most common AKMs used in films.

AKM - 7.62x39mm.
A "Movie" NVA soldier charges with fixed bayonet.
The "Movie" NVA soldier disembowels Sandusky with his AKM bayonet. The NVA soldier is played by veteran movie stuntman, Jeff Imada, more recognizable in his role in Big Trouble in Little China.
A guerrilla aims his AKM rifle.
A guerrilla holds his AKM on Four Leaf (Nick Nolte).
The guard in the back is armed with an AKM fitted with an AK-74 muzzle brake to look like an AK-74. Also, the image looks to be reversed, or the guard has a lefty AK.
A closer shot of the possibly reversed AKM.
A guerrilla with an AKM.
This guerrilla is armed with a rubber AKM based on the lack of a bolt handle and a front sight, as well as a thicker trigger guard.


The two guerrillas who halt Portnoy from using their heroin are armed with under-folding AKMS assault rifles.

AKMS - 7.62x39mm.
Two guerrillas hold their AKMS rifles on Portnoy.


Several guerrillas, including Tran (Brandon Soo Hoo) are armed with AKMSU carbines modified with Krinkov parts kits with side-folding stocks and black furniture to resemble AKS-74U carbines.

AKMSU Krinkov - 7.62x39mm. This is a blank adapted full auto transferable AKM (7.62x39mm) pistol that was converted into a Krinkov via parts kit.
The guerrilla leader totes an AKMSU. Note how it features an AKS-74U-style side-folding stock, yet uses a 7.62x39mm magazine.
The guerrilla leader with his AKMSU.
The guerrilla leader holds his AKMSU on Four Leaf.
Tran hits Speedman in the crotch with the stock of his AKMSU when he doesn't act stupid enough as Simple Jack.
Tran going to the front gate with his AKMSU in hand.
Tran with his AKMSU.
Tran chambers his AKMSU.
Tru (Trieu Tran) looks over at his AKMSU.
Byong (Reggie Lee) fires his AKMSU.
Tru fires his AKMSU.


Some of the guerrillas are seen armed with SKS rifles.

Chinese Type 56 Carbine a.k.a SKS rifle - 7.62x39mm.
A guerrilla to the right is armed with an SKS rifle.
A guerrilla with his SKS rifle.
A guerrilla armed with an SKS.


Three types of M4A1 carbines are seen used by the guerrilla forces, one of which is seen with the carry handle removed, Knights Armament RIS rails affixed (with no rail covers) and fitted with a Aimpoint red-dot sight, the other with the carry handle attached with an ACOG scope mounted on it. Lazarus grabs one of these rifles and is seen using it when searching for Speedman in the huts, however his does not have the ACOG sight.

Colt M4A1 Carbine with M68 Aimpoint scope and RIS foregrip 5.56mm
Colt M4A1 Carbine with standard (non-LE) stock 5.56mm
A guard points his M4A1 fitted with a red-dot sight at Lazarus.
The guards holds looks of confusion as Lazarus attempts to speak Mandarin.
The guard with his M4A1.
A guard with an M4A1 fitted with the carry handle attached with an ACOG mounted.
A guard with an M4A1.
Lazarus with an M4A1.
Lazarus with an M4A1.


One of the guerrillas is seen armed with an CQBR rifle with an A2 receiver, and an ACOG scope mounted on the carrying handle. The CQBR is a short 10.3in. barrel version of the M4A1 Carbine, so it certainly fits the profile.

CQBR with 5.56x45mm with RIS handguard
A guerrilla points his CQBR at Cody.
A guerrilla armed with the same CQBR.
A guerrilla armed with a CQBR.

Submachine guns

Heckler & Koch MP5A5

One of the guerrillas is seen armed with a Heckler & Koch MP5A5 submachine gun.

Heckler & Koch MP5A5 - 9mm.
A guerrilla with his MP5A5 at the ready.
A guerrilla with an MP5A5.
A guerrilla to the right with an MP5A5.


One of the guerrillas is seen armed with an IMI Uzi when he captures Portnoy.

IMI Uzi - 9mm.
A guerrillas armed with an IMI Uzi.


Ithaca 37

Lazarus uses a sawed-off Ithaca 37 shotgun as his weapon of choice in the film. However, the gun mysteriously vanishes later in the movie.

Ithaca 37 sawed-off - 12 gauge.
Lazarus with his Ithaca 37 during the opening "Hot LZ" scene.
Lazarus with his Ithaca 37.
Lazarus with his Ithaca 37 as he and Speedman discuss acting mental-retardation in movies.
Lazarus with his Ithaca 37.

Machine Guns


Jeff "Fats" Portnoy (Jack Black) wields an M60 Machine Gun as his weapon in the film. Jack Black commented on how he got stuck with the M60, which he knew was nicknamed "The Pig", and was told he was a natural with it, something he found disturbing. Some other random soldiers are also seen firing M60s during the opening scene.

M60 General Purpose Machine Gun (GPMG) - 7.62x51mm NATO.
A door-gunner fires an M60 during the "Hot LZ" opening scene.
Portnoy fires his M60 during the opening scene.
A door-gunner fires an M60.
Portnoy with his M60.
Portnoy with his M60.
"This thing's too heavy. I want the rubber one that the prop-guy gave me. Where's the fuckin' prop-guy?!"


A door-gunner is seen manning an M60D machine gun during the opening "Hot LZ" scene. The M60D was used on helicopters during the Vietnam War.

M60D - 7.62x51mm NATO.
A door-gunner mans and M60D.



Disposable M72 LAW launchers are seen strapped to both Sandusky and Portnoy's backpacks.

M72 LAW - 66mm.
An M72 LAW is seen in Portnoy's pack.
An M72 LAW is seen in Sandusky's pack, on the verge of falling out of it.

Norinco Type 69

Tran uses a Norinco Type 69 antitank launcher to take out the truck the gang tries to escape in and tries to shoot down their chopper as they escape, the rocket being stopped only by a perfectly thrown TiVo box from Speedman's agent, Rick "Pecker" Peck (Matthew McConaughey).

Norinco Type 69
Tran (Brandon Soo Hoo) with the Norinco Type 69.
Tran (Brandon Soo Hoo) shoulders the Type 69 as the gang drive away in the truck. Note carry handle and single pistol grip.
Tran (Brandon Soo Hoo) fires the Type 69 at the truck.
Tran (Brandon Soo Hoo) prepares to fire the Type 69 at the chopper. Note the non-standard Anti-Aircraft sight. The flip up sight for the Type 67 looks nothing like this. Also note the men standing directly behind the launcher, which is not a good idea when it's about to be fired.

M67 "Baseball" grenade

Speedman and Portnoy are seen with M67 hand grenades attached to their belts and jackets. Since their film is supposed to take place in 1969, it makes sense to see them with these grenades, since '69 was when the M67 began to mass replace the M26 grenade.

M67 hand grenade.
Speedman keeps an M67 grenade hanging from his jacket.
Speedman pulls the pin on his M67 grenade to throw at the enemy guerrillas, and despite it being a dummy grenade, Cody happens to set off some C4 at the same time. This is a common 'cliche' in action films, especially bad action films, which is why Speedman does it. In real life, one cannot pull the pin from a grenade with one's teeth without causing severe dental damage.
Portnoy keeps an M67 on his belt.

M26 "Lemon" grenade

Sandusky is seen with an M26 hand grenade attached to his belt.

M26 hand grenade.
An M26 grenade is seen on Sandusky's belt, although it appears to be a blue inert dummy grenade.

M18 Smoke grenade

An M18 Smoke Grenade is seen on Speedman's jacket.

M18 Smoke Grenade.
An M18 smoke grenade is seen on Speedman's jacket.

Chinese Type 67 Stick Grenade

During the opening "Hot LZ" scene, a Vietnamese soldier tries to throw a Vietnam Era Chinese Type 67 Stick Grenade at the Huey chopper as it takes off, so Speedman jumps up and stops the grenade, losing his hands in the process. The "tin can" style Type 67 (also called the Type II) and the Pineapple style Type 58 stick grenades were commonly used by NVA (PAVN) soldiers or VC Guerrillas during the war.

A Chinese Type II Stick Grenade in mid-flight towards the Huey helicopter.


Cody finds a M9 Flamethrower in the enemy shack. When he and Four Leaf Tayback (Nick Nolte) try to escape from the guerrilla's heroin base, Cody gives Tayback the Flamethrower, which he uses to hold back the enemies.

M9-7 Flamethrower
I don't know what it's called, I just know the sound it makes when it LIES!
Tayback blazes away with the Flamethrower.
Tayback with the Flamethrower.

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