Friday, November 03, 2006
Borat: Cultural Learnings of America For Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan
Based on Sacha Baron Cohen's fictional character, Borat makes the successful jump from a TV sketch to the big screen. This formula has a shaky past and most of the time doesn't work. Fortunately, Borat lends itself perfectly to a full length film and is unlike anything you've ever seen.
The film is outrageous, offensive, and hysterically funny. It is "Blazing Saddles" for a new generation. When that film opened in the 70's audiences could not believe what they were hearing and seeing but it left them weak from laughter while breaking taboos at the same time. Borat is a TV personality from Kazakhstan who journeys to America to learn of our culture. Much like "Saddles", the film sets up outrageous situations in familiar settings but the big difference is most of the people Borat encounters are real and not in on the joke.
This sets up biting social, political, and sexual commentary. Many of the reactions to Borat's behavior are extremely funny but it's also scary to think some people in this country still have the attitudes revealed in the film.
Just as the story begins to wear thin, a new encounter or situation will have you laughing out loud. This is not a film for everyone as many will NOT get the joke but if you go with an open mind and realize this is satire, you may find yourself weak from laughter. Be warned, there is plenty of gross comedy and bad behavior but underneath there is method to the madness and it's name is Borat.