Friday, 10 July 2009

Bruno - Review

It has been three years since Sacha Baron Cohen unleashed his sexist, anti-Semitic broadcaster known Borat on the silver screen to the delight (and surprise) of movie audiences world wide transforming the man behind the tache into a genuine film star, since then he has appeared in and shone in films such a Talladega Nights opposite Will Farrell and even went toe to toe with Johnny Depp in the Oscar nominated heavyweight musical Sweeney Todd. Fast forward to 2009 where comedies of all shapes and sizes have been doing well at the box office it was time for Cohen to release his third self created character upon the film screen in the form of Austrian fashion guru Bruno. First appearing (just like his preceding character) as part of the support cast to Cohen's original comic creation Ali G (remember him?), Bruno opens with the character fired from his show after disrupting a catwalk show during Milan Fashion week. Accompanied by his
assistant's assistant Lutz, he travels to the
United States to become a superstar

I must admit when I first saw sat down to watch Borat I was not expecting a great deal of the movie to appeal to me, but upon watching I couldn't stop laughing from beginning to end and furthermore never having been as shocked and appalled in a long time at the sheer audacity of Cohen making a mockery of the people who appear in the movie unknown to his actual nature of him shooting a Hollywood movie. Following pretty much the exact same formula Bruno carries on where Borat left off travelling across the world poking fun at the ignorance of Americans as well as Europeans and the Israeli and Palestinians. In terms of performances Sacha Baron Cohen must be applauded and frankly saluted at what he has managed to achieve in this film though one could argue that he was essentially rehashing the same jokes on different victims, the fact he was able to recreate that same level of shock and horror on people's faces I thought was utter genius. Though arguably the same structure to Borat it is without a shadow of doubt far more offensive and (trust me) the 18 certificate (Borat was only a 15 for the record) was completely justified with moments that I could not possibly list here because if you have not witnessed this film yet then it would be an utter crime to spoil what has not been shown in the trailers.

Bruno's main appeal however rests in the naivety of the character, who is not necessarily dislikeable because the horrific things he does, he does without any nastiness or malice and though completely obnoxious in some weird twisted way he always has the best intentions. From exchanging an iPod for an African child to trying to gain peace in the Middle East, Bruno may just be doing all this to better his own quest to superstardom but it is strangely satisfying to see he becomes a better man for it by the film's final moments. However though I enjoyed it, I felt it was a case of same movie, different clothes which is not essentially a bad thing but when he comes to making his next comic creation he might want to start thinking of changing the formula since two hilarious, offensive foreign broadcasters poking fun at middle/lower class America is certain "company" a third might be considered a "crowd".

Final Thoughts

Sacha Baron Cohen has once again created a comedy film that truly challenges the limits a film maker can go to when it comes to material that can just about make it past the censors. Unrelentlessly hilarious from beginning to end, if I wasn't laughing out loud I was in complete numbing shock at the outrageous images before me. At approximately 83 minutes in total, it is not a terribly long film and gets the length just about right never once feeling like it was dragging or that any of the content was purely "filler". However, its biggest (and only) flaw was that it all felt a little too familiar and that we might have seen it somewhere before. Either way it doesn't change the fact I thought that it was a clever, well made film which stands as a testimony to how ignorant the general public can be and its inability to take a joke. Excellent.


See This If You Liked...
Borat. And see this if you didn't like that god awful Ali G movie.

Bruno is in cinemas everywhere now.

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