Brüno

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Pez Dispens3r
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Brüno

Postby Pez Dispens3r » Sat Jul 11, 2009 2:29 am UTC

Any thoughts on the new Sacha Baron Cohen film? I thought it was about on par with Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan: same basic story where Cohen trolls real-life people in-character (with some obviously staged moments) within a scripted framing narrative. The Nazi/Austrian jokes were a bit ho hum, and I didn't find the nudity/explicit sex as confronting as some people in the cinema, but there are some genuinely funny moments in there. Mostly, however, you're just squirming in your seat for Cohen, who puts himself in the most ludicrous scenarios. But I was impressed with the way a lot of people responded to his antics: many of them were quite reserved, even when Cohen's attempts to extract homophobia from people bordered on sexual harrassment. I don't know if this is because he was easier on people in this film than in the last, or if I was just more aware of suspect edits and gave people the benefit of the doubt.

In any event, it was enjoyable and amusing. But I still think Ali G Indahouse was a better comedy, if only because it doesn't pretend to be an intelligent satire.
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Re: Brüno

Postby Izawwlgood » Sat Jul 11, 2009 2:35 am UTC

I can't wait to see this, and just want to say that I am very impressed with his methodology for comedy. Making other people not the brunt of the joke, but the joke itself, is genius.
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Re: Brüno

Postby Lucrece » Sat Jul 11, 2009 7:57 am UTC

It was OK; not as funny as his previous works, but some parts were amusing.

I just know I'll be annoyed in the future with the stream of gay panic humor that will come from this among straight males.


Here's a review I agreed with after watching the movie:

Bruno isn't homophobic. But it's also not nearly as funny as Borat either.

Or maybe it is. As in Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan, Sacha Baron Cohen's 2006 movie, the comedian creates outrageous situations — and then films how real people react.

And many of the set-ups are admittedly brilliant. Asking stage-mothers if they'd allow their actor-babies to operate heavy machinery, or lose ten pounds through liposuction, or be photographed dressed up like Nazis, pushing Jewish babies into ovens? And having these over-eager stage mothers readily agree to all this without question?

Now that is some amazing parody of America's celebrity-obsessed culture!

Likewise, plenty of the jokes are laugh-out-loud hilarious. I defy anyone not to laugh when Bruno has a psychic conjure up the spirit of a deceased member of the band Milli Vanilli — so Bruno can proceed to have "spirit" sex with him.

But even if this movie has its inspired moments, it doesn't have nearly the impact of Borat.

Why? Well, we've seen the joke before: the whole movie is basically Borat with a different funny voice. And no matter how well-told a joke is, it's not nearly as funny the second time you hear it.

In short, Sacha Baron Cohen is the Susan Boyle of comedy. He's just as talented as the first time you saw him, but he's only going to knock your socks off once, at least as long as he's doing almost exactly the same shtick.

In the case of Borat, it was so outrageous, so utterly different from anything we'd seen before, that most of us fell off our chairs laughing, not even noticing its flaws.

This time around, we see the flaws. The movie is more a satire about America's inane obsession with celebrity than it is about exposing homophobia, but both themes have their moments.

Some sequences do fall flat (exactly as in Borat, even if we didn't notice). A long sequence with a martial arts expert teaching Bruno how to defend against "fags" with dildos goes nowhere.

And try as I might, I don't find anything funny about the Middle East situation, even when Cohen pretends not to know the difference between Hamas and hummus.

And why is it funny exactly when someone acts completely inappropriately in a given situation, and then people react with annoyance or outrage?

If I was Paula Abdul and you tried to serve me sushi on a naked male body, I'd get up and leave too. If I was in a focus group and you wasted my time showing what was obviously a ridiculous show (with frontal male nudity, no less, including a talking penis), I'd be annoyed too.

Yes, someone gets naked here, though no word on whether it was really Cohen. But I hope it goes without saying it's the opposite of sexy.


Part of the problem is that the filmmakers, and Cohen, squandered any sense of surprise by generating all those headlines while making the movie, and then commencing with last month's non-stop blitz of stunts and other publicity, including an avalanche of commercials and promotional clips.

By now, we've all seen or read about almost every scene and almost every joke in the movie. It's the anti-Susan Boyle effect where you go into the theater pretty much knowing exactly what you'll get.

The film's other big flaw? It sounds crazy to say this, but I wished I learned something real about Bruno. I was disappointed the film, and Cohen, never took him even remotely seriously. The character was kept entirely on the level of a Saturday Night Live sketch — and 90 minutes is an awfully long sketch.

Back to the film's alleged homophobia. Two months ago, when GLAAD and others expressed concern about several scenes, Cohen and the filmmakers reportedly made some cuts. And a representative from GLAAD told me that The New York Times and other media outlets had over-emphasized their complaints, trying to create a "controversy" where one didn't really exist.

In any event, I didn't see anything homophobic in the final film. Sure, there are a couple of tasteless jokes — and they have nothing whatsoever to do with "exposing homophobia." But if they were funny, I didn't care, and when they weren't, it was impossible to feel offended given the nature of the movie, and the fact that this is 2009.

And Bruno himself? It's literally impossible for me to imagine how any sentient person couldn't see him for the outrageous, over-the-top satire he is (and if someone didn't, they're way beyond the reach of a mere movie anyway).

If you want a good laugh or two, go see it Bruno. And while you're at it, take another look of that clip of Susan Boyle on Britain's Got Talent. You'll be almost exactly as entertained.


The cut scenes was the end at which after the cage fight, Bruno's groom would be in a wheel-chair, drooling and brain damage from a gay bashing in the cage fight uproar. I'm glad the only 2 gay men in the preliminary screening raised a stink about it (even when the straights were telling them to shut up, that they were being oversensitive), because it would've certainly killed the movie for me. Making comedy out of gay bashing is infuriating to anyone who has been in that position.
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Re: Brüno

Postby Allium Cepa » Sun Jul 12, 2009 2:43 am UTC

I liked it, made laugh loudly a whole bunch. Favorite parts: when he jumps out of the window at the swinger's party and when he's talking to the parents about the auditions for the baby photo shoot. I was kinda dissapointed by how abruptly it ended, that wasn't a very satisfying ending.
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Re: Brüno

Postby BlackSails » Mon Jul 13, 2009 8:52 pm UTC

Did he actually interview the guy in the Al-Asqa martyr's brigade? Because if that was real, and not staged, Sacha Baron Cohen is not even close to sane.

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Re: Brüno

Postby Joeldi » Tue Jul 14, 2009 11:10 pm UTC

It was better than I thought it would be, having not seen Borat. Laughed quite a bit, didn't expect to. I wouldn't call myself a fan though. not my kind of comedy.
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Re: Brüno

Postby dbsmith » Wed Jul 15, 2009 3:51 am UTC

Second what Lucrece said (and the review he posted)

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Re: Brüno

Postby mr_pathetic » Thu Jul 16, 2009 3:05 am UTC

If I see it at all I'll wait till DVD (I also waited for Borat) ... not on my must see list for this summer.

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Re: Brüno

Postby zombie_monkey » Thu Jul 16, 2009 8:40 am UTC

BlackSails wrote:Did he actually interview the guy in the Al-Asqa martyr's brigade? Because if that was real, and not staged, Sacha Baron Cohen is not even close to sane.

Yes, it was real, not staged.

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Re: Brüno

Postby Virtual_Aardvark » Thu Jul 16, 2009 8:23 pm UTC

I'm not planning to see it in theaters. I've heard it's even more depraved than Borat which I was barely able to get through in one sitting. I'm going to need the opportunity to walk out of the room to take a break.
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Re: Brüno

Postby Lucrece » Fri Jul 17, 2009 6:56 am UTC

mr_pathetic wrote:If I see it at all I'll wait till DVD (I also waited for Borat) ... not on my must see list for this summer.



I have some links for download, if you are interested.

Quite frankly, the movie was depressing to me. Only a few parts made me laugh; the rest made me sad to realize how a lot of this country is like.
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Re: Brüno

Postby 6453893 » Sat Jul 18, 2009 3:59 am UTC

Cohen's attempts to extract homophobia from people bordered on sexual harrassment

This nailed it for me. In every scene, the joke is ultimately on Cohen for making an ass of himself. Ali G, and to a far lesser extent Borat, managed to expose some egregious prejudices. Bruno takes the shtick so far that you can absolutely relate to his victims' reactions, which completely castrates the comedy.

And typing that made me start thinking of newspaper headlines to the effect of COHEN CONFESSES CRAPPY COMEDY COMPLETELY CASTRATED

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Re: Brüno

Postby gereffi » Sat Jul 18, 2009 8:49 am UTC

I went to see Bruno the same night that The Half-Blood Prince came out. My friends aren't exactly Harry Potter fans, so I settled for Bruno. We saw the movie at 10:40, and I saw a few people I knew from school already getting ready to see Harry Potter. I really wanted to hang out with them for the night, but I didn't want to ditch my other friends. So, I saw Bruno.

I can't decide whether I loved it or hated it. I haven't laughed during a movie so much since I saw Superbad. And yet, I kind of felt violated. The movie was a bit too... gay. More so than I expected. I wasn't really interested in seeing Sasha's dick flying around or watching him suck off a ghost. The whole movie just made me too uncomfortable.

When I left the theater, Harry Potter was just starting. I could have easily walked in, but my friends were ready to head home. I coulda had a two-for-one that night. Oh well.

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Re: Brüno

Postby fynthase » Tue Jul 21, 2009 3:27 am UTC

It was pretty funny. Two scenes in it were pretty awesome: the one where Paula Abdul is sitting on hired human furniture while talking about the importance of helping people is the first.

The other was when the moms and dads gave Bruno free rein over their kids, saying that their kids were comfortable with anything as long they were afforded the opportunity to become childhood stars.

I think it was funny but I also think that its positive reception was largely due to how good Borat was. Bruno definitely didn't have the number of funny scenes that Borat did.

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Re: Brüno

Postby Super Hans » Tue Jul 21, 2009 11:55 pm UTC

There were some great moments, the parents of the "child stars" especially. But while the jist of the film is "Ho-ho look at all these silly homophobic people" I couldn't help but feel that some parts of the film strayed from this basis, and not further into intelligent and ironic comdey, but backwards into crudeness only intended to shock the audience.
That said I did laugh almost all the way through.

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Re: Brüno

Postby cpp789 » Wed Aug 05, 2009 3:55 am UTC

I didn't really like it. Some parts were funny, especially the scenes with the child stars, but for the most part it was way over the top. Something might have been ruining my experience with it though...

On a very related note, if you're too young to see it without an adult, get a friend's parent to come; DO NOT get your parent.

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Re: Brüno

Postby Lucas » Wed Aug 05, 2009 1:27 pm UTC

ive read a lot about the movie. I expect Bruno to be great movie , but probably i got too high expectations and the movie would disappoint me.
I watched the part with Eminem live on TV.. lol it was funny moment. Jobs
Anyway thats Cohen, his movies should not be missed. Stellenangebote
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Last edited by Lucas on Mon Aug 10, 2009 8:31 am UTC, edited 2 times in total.

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Pez Dispens3r
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Re: Brüno

Postby Pez Dispens3r » Wed Aug 05, 2009 2:22 pm UTC

6453893 wrote:In every scene, the joke is ultimately on Cohen for making an ass of himself. Ali G, and to a far lesser extent Borat, managed to expose some egregious prejudices. Bruno takes the shtick so far that you can absolutely relate to his victims' reactions, which completely castrates the comedy.

I think Borat was funnier because people actually believe there are Eastern Europeans like him (it's part of the arrogant mentality Westerners embellish in), whereas Brüno isn't novel for being a foreigner but rather for being homosexual. I don't think nearly as many people bought that homosexuals like him actually exist: a lot of people he was trolling seemed to be wise to what was going on, and I think partly it's because even they recognised how dumb some of the stereotypes Cohen was embracing are. That is, a random person might believe people like Borat actually exist, but no one would think Brüno exists, and this is why the comedy just fell flat.
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