Movie: Borat

Fans of HBO’s Da Ali G Show have waited more than two years for some new material from the brilliant mind of Sacha Baron Cohen. And this November, audiences around the country are lining up to see the new full-length feature film, Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan

The movie has everything you’d expect from Cohen’s mustachioed alter ego, the brutally un-PC Borat Sagdiyev. From beginning to end, Borat is filled with casual allusions to incest and rape, embarrassing interviews with unsuspecting politicians (including right-wing nut job Alan Keyes – or as Borat describes him, “a real chocolate face”), unenlightened remarks about women, homosexuals, and of course, Jews (though in real life, Cohen himself is a practicing Jew). While the film does drag at times – even Borat loses some of his mystique after an hour-and-a-half – on the whole, Cohen manages to pull it off.

We dare you to keep a straight face when Borat tries unsuccessfully to learn the art of the ‘not’ joke, much to the frustration of his teacher; or the segment in which he invites an overweight, scantily-clad, black (tranny?) call girl to a small dinner party hosted by Southern, former-slave-owning types; or finally, when he attends a hardcore Texas church service – the kind of scary shit that we New York liberals cannot even fathom, complete with religious fanatics writhing about, speaking in tongues. Those who haven’t seen Da Ali G Show are likely to find the movie especially riotous, while longtime fans may feel slighted, as the material is sometimes a bit too familiar. But as long as you don’t expect more from Borat than a movie of its kind can deliver, you won’t be disappointed.

WWW.BORAT.TV

(A VERSION OF THIS ARTICLE WAS ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN YRB MAGAZINE COPYRIGHT © 2007)

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