Flamboyantly gay Austrian fashionista
Brüno goes to America to become famous.
Directed by Larry Charles
Written by Sacha Baron Cohen, Anthony Hines,
Dan Mazer, Jeff Schaffer
Starring Sacha Baron Cohen, Gustaf Hammarsten,
Clifford Bañagale, Lloyd Robinson, Paula Abdul, Ron Paul
Spin-Off of the 2000-2004 TV series Da Ali G Show
Brüno may just be the most awkward, cringeworthy, unbelievably hard-R comedy I've ever seen. And if it didn't have Sacha Baron Cohen delivering his trademark mockumentary brand of humiliating (mostly) idiotic strangers, it would be a complete mess. Brüno was never as funny as Ali G or Borat to me. In fact, I often skipped his segments on Da Ali G Show. I think this movie has its audience, but it lacks something special that Borat had. I think, in this film, Cohen actually does go too far.
Brüno (Cohen) is a wannabe fashionista who is so ridiculously flamboyant that it would be offensive today. It wasn't in 2009. In fact, there's a lot about this film that would never get it made today. After a mishap at a fashion show that gets him banned from the fashion community, Brüno goes to America to try to be famous. He starts by interviewing celebrities like Paula Abdul, Harrison Ford (hilarious brief cameo), and Senator Ron Paul. He of course traps the celebrities into incredibly awkward situations they knew nothing about, as is Cohen's shtick. Apart from a few chuckles, Brüno just isn't that funny a character. He didn't really work for the show, and I think he really doesn't work in a movie.
This film is quintessential viewing for Ali G fans, but prepare yourself. Under no circumstances should you watch this with your kids or your parents. There's a good thirty seconds of just a swinging dick onscreen. It's worth a few laughs, but the narrative is pointless, the ending is abrupt, and it doesn't have anything really compelling to say about our country beyond obvious homophobia in the American South. Who knew?