Sunday, July 26, 2009

BRUNO (2009)

Written by Sasha Baron Cohen & Anthony Hines

Directed by Larry Charles

Where & When: Arclight Theater, Hollywood, CA July 15, 2009 11:35AM

While I found "Bruno" mildly amusing, I think this film is way, way too graphic for heterosexual consumption and probably a little offensive to the homosexual agenda. So who is this film for? Maybe for a few guys who have a strange fascination with the anal cavity who enjoy jokes about it. The guys from "South Park" must think this movie is hilarious.

My boyfriend, Dean who has not seen it but thinks the film is homophobic and can't believe I went to see it. I was horrified to learn my mother went to see this and was completely grossed out by it. I resisted the urge to apologize to her for having to witness explicit depictions of gay sex. I think it's beautiful but she doesn't need to see it. She also said she will never see another Sasha Baron Cohen film.

The film is about Bruno, an ignorant, self-involved fashionista who has a television program in Berlin reporting on all things that are fashionable. After being fired from his job, Bruno decides to come to America to seek out fame and fortune. We follow him as he travels across the country interviewing celebrities (Paula Abdul), politicians (Ron Paul), rednecks and getting in to all sorts of mischief along the way.

He also acquires the hottest accessory trend... an African baby, then he goes on a talk show which just happens to be populated with a large African-American audience and announces he traded the baby for an Ipod and has named him O.J. The audience, obviously, are not amused. He decides that being gay is not so great anymore, so he wants to convert to a heterosexual lifestyle. He gets advice from a former homosexual who tells him to let God into his heart and he will succeed in changing into a straight male. It works for like, a brief moment, until Bruno realizes you shouldn't change who you really are and to accept your fabulous self.

Like "Borat" before this, the film has it's lead character pulling unsuspecting people into his fictional world. Because of the success of "Borat", you would think people would be slightly suspicious of the antics of this flamboyant German but it appears that he found few people who hadn't seen Mr. Cohen's previous work. Some people have later claimed they were in on the joke but after watching Ms Abdul on "American Idol" preparing to critique a contestant's second song they hadn't performed yet, I'm not confident she has a clear grasp on what is real.

"Bruno" is not nearly as good or as funny as "Borat". This film feels much more forced and struggles to find humor in all the situations they but Bruno in. So enter "Bruno" at your own risk but don't say you haven't been warned.