Saturday, July 11, 2009

Review: Bruno

Once upon a time I thought Brokeback Mountain would be the gayest movie I'll ever see. Having seen Sacha Baron Cohen's Bruno tonight I can say that this film blows Brokeback out of the water in terms of gayness. I'm not sure how the MPAA allowed this movie to get an R rating. There is definitely more nudity and sexual references in this movie than any other mainstream movie released to-date. All of that being said, I did enjoy Bruno and found many of the scenes hilarious.

In keeping with the overall theme of 2006's Borat, Bruno continues the documentary style of storytelling as the camera follows the Austrian fashion designer in various exploits around the globe. Once again, Cohen is able to present American culture through the antics of his character. We see how people from all walks of life react to a flamboyantly gay person. In addition to the gay undertones, Bruno exposes other disturbing flaws in society. For example there is a scene where Bruno interviews parents that want their young children to be casted in a commercial. We see how desperate the parents are for money and fame that they'll risk putting their kids in extremely compromising positions just to make sure they get a shot to make it in the entertainment industry.

It's hard to tell if some of the scenes (including guest appearances by Paula Abdul and Ron Paul) are staged or "real." It's difficult to believe that someone like Abdul would not recognize Cohen during his interview as Bruno. Overall I'm giving this film a 3.5 out of 5 JRs as I did find it humorous and enjoy the creativity that Cohen brings to these types of movies. I don't think I'll ever have the need to see it again though and it certainly doesn't live up to the brilliant Borat. I'd actually like to see Cohen do a feature-length take on his Ali G character (my favorite of the Da Ali G Show personas) for his next trick.

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