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Ricky S
2009-07-07, 07:14 PM
So with the release of Bruno in cinemas, I was wondering what fellow playgrounders thought of the whole affair? As controversial as it is do you, still find it funny?

Cristo Meyers
2009-07-07, 08:35 PM
First thought: didn't this kind of humor go out with Tom Green?

Second thought: I think I'll just change the channel.

Haven't given it much thought beyond that, actually.

skywalker
2009-07-08, 01:09 AM
I far prefer his Borat character.

My problem with Bruno is that it perpetuates a stereotype of gay people that I'd rather not see. Yes, some gay men are incredibly flamboyant and shallow. However, others are not, and I find it sad when movies perpetuate that idea, since it strengthens that view for the public and for young gay men themselves.

I'll see it, but I probably won't find it nearly as entertaining as Borat.

oryx
2009-07-08, 01:42 AM
I thought it was kind of poking fun at the stereotype? Haven't actually seen it, I'm just going off promos I've seen.

revolver kobold
2009-07-08, 01:48 AM
I far prefer his Borat character.

My problem with Bruno is that it perpetuates a stereotype of gay people that I'd rather not see. Yes, some gay men are incredibly flamboyant and shallow. However, others are not, and I find it sad when movies perpetuate that idea, since it strengthens that view for the public and for young gay men themselves.

I'll see it, but I probably won't find it nearly as entertaining as Borat.

While I haven't seen the movie Bruno yet, I was a big fan of the character on The Ali G Show. The point of his character is to embrace the stereotype in order to get the reactions out of the people he interviews. By being as over the top as he is with his characters (Borat, Ali G and Bruno), he gets much stronger reactions than with a more mild character.

Megatron46
2009-07-08, 06:18 AM
As with all of Sacha Baron Cohen's stuff, Bruno is used to satirise the opinions of others, in particular people's attitudes towards the gay community. In the same way that he used Borat to highlight people's attitude towards race, (amongst many other things), he uses Bruno to highlight people's attitude towards sexuality, (amongst other things). HIs characters are over the top, almost to distract people from the other areas he is attacking. One of my particular favourites is when he was interviewing a Palestinian and an Isreali about the problems of re-settlement in the Gaza Strip and he kept referring to Hamas as a tasty chickpea based snack! The interviewees didn't realise because they were so pre-occupied with his overly camp character....Thinking about it, I'm not sure how this satirises anything, (other than people's willingness to take money to be on TV and not actcually think about what they are saying), but it was hillarious.

I also LOVE Brass Eye and The Day Today by Chris Morris, a forerunner of Sacha Baron Cohen- DVDs for both are cheap on Amazon and if you haven't seen them, some of the funniest, on the edge satire on tv, especially the Brass Eye 'Paedophile Special' which had people up in arms, even though most of them hadn't seen it! He was not condoning paedophilla, far from it- but he was satirising the media and the Daily Mail's reaction justified everything he did!

Muz
2009-07-08, 11:38 AM
Is Cohen our generation's Andy Kauffman? And I don't mean that as a compliment. I personally don't either of their humor/performance art (the latter of which terms I think Kauffman at least preferred), and they seem to share the characteristic of ****ing people off and making a general *** of themselves via characters.

In fairness, pretty much all of what I know of Cohen is through seeing ads for his stuff, which were enough to make me not care about seeing more. However I will say that to say his kind of humor went out with Tom Green is unfair to Cohen. (At least Cohen seems to be intelligent about his own jackassery.)

Cristo Meyers
2009-07-08, 11:47 AM
However I will say that to say his kind of humor went out with Tom Green is unfair to Cohen. (At least Cohen seems to be intelligent about his own jackassery.)

I'd say that's debatable. From what I've seen, the only real difference between the two is Tom Green acts like, well, Tom Green. Cohen just takes on an idiotic stereotype when he's acting like an idiot.

I agree that what I have seen of Borat and Bruno was enough to make me not want to see any more.

bladedSmoke
2009-07-08, 11:53 AM
I far prefer his Borat character.

My problem with Bruno is that it perpetuates a stereotype of gay people that I'd rather not see. Yes, some gay men are incredibly flamboyant and shallow. However, others are not, and I find it sad when movies perpetuate that idea, since it strengthens that view for the public and for young gay men themselves.

I'll see it, but I probably won't find it nearly as entertaining as Borat.

...And Borat wasn't stereotypical at all? :smallconfused:

The whole point is to satirise the stereotype, not further it.

Cristo Meyers
2009-07-08, 11:57 AM
...And Borat wasn't stereotypical at all? :smallconfused:

The whole point is to satirise the stereotype, not further it.

Accuse me of completely missing the point, but how is taking on an extreme racial/ethnic/whatever stereotype and acting like an utter idiot in public for the purposes of Candid Camera style comedy satire?

Muz
2009-07-08, 12:30 PM
I'd say that's debatable. From what I've seen, the only real difference between the two is Tom Green acts like, well, Tom Green. Cohen just takes on an idiotic stereotype when he's acting like an idiot.


From what I've seen, Cohen at least talks to people, interviews and interacts with them. He seems to have some sort of direction to what he's doing, whereas Green would just dump cheese dip on his head and jump around saying "I AM THE KING OF THE CHEESE!!" Then if no one laughed, he'd try to balance some nearby object or small animal on his head and call it a day.

Cristo Meyers
2009-07-08, 12:45 PM
From what I've seen, Cohen at least talks to people, interviews and interacts with them. He seems to have some sort of direction to what he's doing, whereas Green would just dump cheese dip on his head and jump around saying "I AM THE KING OF THE CHEESE!!" Then if no one laughed, he'd try to balance some nearby object or small animal on his head and call it a day.

Fair enough. I can see your point. Though to me a jackass is still a jackass. It's the same style of comedy: getting people's reactions on camera. One is just apparently trying to seduce Ron Paul during an interview while the other was running around with a tacklebox full of pizza ingredients as a "pre-emptive delivery service."

Zencao
2009-07-08, 12:49 PM
Accuse me of completely missing the point, but how is taking on an extreme racial/ethnic/whatever stereotype and acting like an utter idiot in public for the purposes of Candid Camera style comedy satire?

Because in his interactions with people, he brings out what America truly thinks of the stereotype. Like in Borat when he gives the speech at the rodeo, even when he says "May George Bush kill every woman and child in iraq" (paraphrased, but you get the idea) everyone cheers. When he acts terrible at the etiquette lessons, they DO try to help him, and put up with a lot more than they should. The people he gets a lift off of are very friendly and accepting of him despite his 'cultural' differences. The humour doesn't come from his character acting like an idiot, it comes from the fact that people are so (even subliminally) racist that they think that someone could actually be like that seriously.

I'm personally looking forward to Bruno. Seeing the varied reactions to him will be enlightening :P My favourite to see is the hunters.

Bruno: "We are just like the sex and the city girls"
Donnie: "No! No we are not..."
Bruno: (pause) "Which one are you Donnie?
Donnie: (Deepening his voice) I'm none of em. I'm Donnie.
(AWKWARD SILENCE)
Bruno: ...That is such a Samantha thing to say!

skywalker
2009-07-08, 12:55 PM
...And Borat wasn't stereotypical at all? :smallconfused:

The whole point is to satirise the stereotype, not further it.

The difference is that young Kazakh boys weren't encouraged by Borat to embrace... being Borat. Borat did very little to further stereotypical behaviors because the intended audience didn't include the person he was pretending to be.

Another way to put it is that I think Borat was very successful in satirizing the stereotype. Bruno seems to be a bit more of a gray area: Is he satirizing our cultural view of gay men, or is he satirizing gay men? Plenty of people will also go to that movie and think they are able to laugh at repugnant things "because he's gay." I cannot stand that attitude in American culture. Unfortunately, it seems to be most prevalent in those who "support" the gay community.

When I laughed during Borat, it was most often not at Borat, and more at how people reacted to his statements. In this movie, I see far too much "shock value" humor, with the whole "African baby" storyline being most prominent for me.

Serpentine
2009-07-08, 12:58 PM
A well-considered, comprehensive and heartfelt "meh" from me. I generally don't like "embarrassment humour", and that seems to be what this guy mostly relies on. Ali G was okay...

Cristo Meyers
2009-07-08, 01:00 PM
Because in his interactions with people, he brings out what America truly thinks of the stereotype. Like in Borat when he gives the speech at the rodeo, even when he says "May George Bush kill every woman and child in iraq" (paraphrased, but you get the idea) everyone cheers. When he acts terrible at the etiquette lessons, they DO try to help him, and put up with a lot more than they should. The people he gets a lift off of are very friendly and accepting of him despite his 'cultural' differences. The humour doesn't come from his character acting like an idiot, it comes from the fact that people are so (even subliminally) racist that they think that someone could actually be like that seriously.


I see. To me that's something that gets lost in the telling. Of course people are going to try and be accepting or at least tolerant, they're on camera and a majority of the time they know it (maybe not the crowd in Texas and some other stunts, but the Driver's Ed instructor and others had to).



When I laughed during Borat, it was most often not at Borat, and more at how people reacted to his statements. In this movie, I see far too much "shock value" humor, with the whole "African baby" storyline being most prominent for me.

There! Thank you, that sums it up nicely. I'm starting to see now how Borat had more satire in it, though I still don't agree with it. Bruno just seems to take everything that I don't like about the other movie and go even further with it.

Zencao
2009-07-08, 01:03 PM
The difference is that young Kazakh boys weren't encouraged by Borat to embrace... being Borat. Borat did very little to further stereotypical behaviors because the intended audience didn't include the person he was pretending to be.

By that reasoning, does Ali G In Da House encourage young white boys to act 'gangsta'?

Jibar
2009-07-08, 01:32 PM
By that reasoning, does Ali G In Da House encourage young white boys to act 'gangsta'?

Young English White Boys don't need the encouragement...

bosssmiley
2009-07-08, 02:24 PM
Who does SBC have blackmail on that he keeps on being allowed to make films?

Ali G, Borat, Bruno: they're the same f'ing gag! (faux simpleton offends people on camera; hilarity ensues) And it wasn't that funny a gag first time around. :smallannoyed:

Even Bo Selecta ("Shamone Mofos (eh-heeeh!) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cyUNqnE84K)") > SBC

Theolotus
2009-07-08, 02:27 PM
Why is the movie considered to have underlying satire? Is it because the movie is a major motion picture? Is it because we laugh at it and want justification?

Mr. Cohen may have a deeper goal than making people feel out of place, however; there is no indication of a deeper goal. Often with satire the goal is expressed, hinted at, or able to be gleaned from the material.

For example, Johnny Knoxville is not credited with having deep satirical meaning behind his stunts. A guy getting hit in the groin is funny because the audience thinks so. Why does Bruno get treated differently?

I say the movie doesn't look funny. I think there are some odd moments where I would laugh, but it is gambling on people being unable to "call a spade a spade". If it is a "Major" movie it isn't alowed to flop because it isn't funny? Somehow it's existance must be justified by calling it "satire".

Mr. Swift was a master of satire. Bruno is not.

Avilan the Grey
2009-07-08, 02:40 PM
Personally I will treat this as I treated Borat:
Basically I find Cohen as funny as stepping in dogpoo. Although slightly more smelly.

...And I fully understood why Kazakhs felt extremely insulted by his "humor". He could at least have picked a fake country.

Dienekes
2009-07-08, 02:43 PM
The humour doesn't come from his character acting like an idiot, it comes from the fact that people are so (even subliminally) racist that they think that someone could actually be like that seriously.

Having met someone who does act exactly like Bruno in real life, yes people can act like that seriously, and it's just as annoying.

Before I get flamed for being anti-gay, I understand that this stereotype is largely inaccurate but it does exist.

Zencao
2009-07-08, 03:06 PM
Young English White Boys don't need the encouragement...

Hardly a proper answer :P I think this will do what Ali G did, make a lot of them realize how stupid they look doing it. Now 'Wigga's' are only ever seen in jest, since no-one could take themselves seriously after the film.

Jibar
2009-07-08, 03:20 PM
Hardly a proper answer :P

How about if I say that Catherine Tate did a parody of that gangsta chav white kid and portrayed them as stupid wasteful repetitive catchphrase spouting idiots all of which was copied by those same kids who thought it was really cool.
English Gangster White Kids are some of the most belligerent and unaware morons this side of the Mississippi.
Ali G did not affect them in the slightest, it was just a perfect representation of what they already were.

Mauve Shirt
2009-07-08, 03:25 PM
My reaction to this was "Oh boy, the guy from Borat is back. :smallannoyed:"
I disliked Borat, I suspect I'd dislike Bruno.

Raistlin1040
2009-07-08, 05:40 PM
I've never seen Sacha Baron Cohen as incredibly hilarious, but I do think he's an amusing comedian. I'd liken him to Stephen Colbert, I think. The only real difference is that Colbert is about laughing at *him* and Baron Cohen is about laughing at *other people*. Never saw Ali G Indahouse or Borat, but I did see Da Ali G Show, and I will likely see Bruno.

He's definitely satire. That's not something that should be argued, I think. I think that some of the comedy in the film is about laughing at the absurdity of the character, because (most) gay people aren't like that. But some of the comedy is also derived from the real people, who flip out. And in the latter, it's a way of laughing at intolerance in many cases, and in other cases, simply laughing at something that strikes you as funny.

For point of reference, I'm a bisexual male, and I'm not offended by Bruno, at least from the trailers.

Film spoiler from wikipedia
After a split from Lulz and social services taking away his baby he decides to re-make himself as a heterosexual.
This seriously sounds like satire to me, if played a certain way.

Eldan
2009-07-08, 08:25 PM
Hardly a proper answer :P I think this will do what Ali G did, make a lot of them realize how stupid they look doing it. Now 'Wigga's' are only ever seen in jest, since no-one could take themselves seriously after the film.

Not round here. I know several specimen who constantly praise Ali G and/or name it as their favourite movie.

skywalker
2009-07-09, 06:12 PM
By that reasoning, does Ali G In Da House encourage young white boys to act 'gangsta'?

I have no idea. I don't know where you're from, in my neck of the woods (Southern USA) Ali G was a very, very low key movie. For comparison, I worked at a video store throughout the time period when both those movies were released. We had one copy of Ali G which never sold. We sold at least 100 copies of Borat.

Furthermore, just because Ali G didn't do something doesn't mean Bruno won't. Bruno is getting massive publicity that Ali G never got.

If we're going to talk about homosexual-related cinema, I think a prime example of a good film for young gay men to see is Milk. A movie that portrays gay people as being normal people with a different sexual orientation. Some of them are weird. A couple of them are bat**** crazy. But that's not because they're gay, it's because they're people. Too many people in this country link "gay" with "crazy, vacuous, etc." I don't think this movie will do anything to change those perceptions, because I remain unconvinced that it satirizes the stereotype and not the person.


Having met someone who does act exactly like Bruno in real life, yes people can act like that seriously, and it's just as annoying.

Before I get flamed for being anti-gay, I understand that this stereotype is largely inaccurate but it does exist.

Of course it really exists, and of course it's really annoying. It doesn't make you anti-gay, it makes you anti-idiot.


He's definitely satire. That's not something that should be argued, I think. I think that some of the comedy in the film is about laughing at the absurdity of the character, because (most) gay people aren't like that. But some of the comedy is also derived from the real people, who flip out. And in the latter, it's a way of laughing at intolerance in many cases, and in other cases, simply laughing at something that strikes you as funny.

For point of reference, I'm a bisexual male, and I'm not offended by Bruno, at least from the trailers.

I don't think it's the absurdity of the character we're expected to laugh at. And most of the "flip-out" moments in this film seem justified to me. Like the business with the Army, or the crap in Israel.

The mastery of Borat was that it exposed our country's continuing apathy toward and embracing of beliefs we purport to find abhorrent.

Cristo Meyers
2009-07-10, 07:22 AM
I don't think it's the absurdity of the character we're expected to laugh at. And most of the "flip-out" moments in this film seem justified to me. Like the business with the Army, or the crap in Israel.


And that's where it gets me. People don't go around thinking that they're going to end up on a TV show, or that a movie is being filmed nearby unless they're told. There's no real reason to believe that someone acting like a complete fool isn't being utterly sincere, especially when some of us have actually known people like that, even if Borat or Bruno take those kinds of people and ratchet them up to 11.

SilveryCord
2009-07-10, 08:41 AM
Brüno isn't making fun of homosexuality, it's making fun of homophobia. IMO Cohen is following in the same vein as Sarah Silverman (whose jokes weren't about race, they were about racism)
unfortunately, this distinction is going to get lost on the majority of theatergoers who will think it's funny because LOL HE'S GAY.

Tamburlaine
2009-07-10, 08:57 AM
Issues with stereotyping aside, and ignoring the fact that I personally don't find him funny, my main problem with Mr. Cohen is that he has managed to make a lot of money by making a whole movie out of a one note character from a sketch. On three separate occasions. I wish it were that easy for everyone.

valadil
2009-07-10, 09:01 AM
I'd say that's debatable. From what I've seen, the only real difference between the two is Tom Green acts like, well, Tom Green. Cohen just takes on an idiotic stereotype when he's acting like an idiot.


They're both jackasses, but Cohen can elicit any reaction he likes out of people, while Tom Green is only capable of shock and/or disgust.

I'm looking forward to Bruno, but not as much as I had looked forward to Borat. I'll probably wait till it's on TV.

valadil
2009-07-10, 09:07 AM
Issues with stereotyping aside, and ignoring the fact that I personally don't find him funny, my main problem with Mr. Cohen is that he has managed to make a lot of money by making a whole movie out of a one note character from a sketch. On three separate occasions. I wish it were that easy for everyone.

Is this any different from SNL movies? They take recurring characters from 5 minute sketches and try to wrap a plot around it. Sometimes it turns out good (Waynes World) and sometimes you get a 5 minutes of jokes stretched out into a 90 minute movie (Night at the Roxbury (not that I saw it, but it's a safe assumption)). For this type of movie, at least Cohen does it well.

pflare
2009-07-10, 10:35 AM
I for one am looking forward to Bruno. Its a satire on...well everything. but most of it is a satire of the gay seterotype and I think that it will be genius. However, I think we all need to remember that it is a comedy and not a profound masterpiece of art. Ryan Sohmer creater of LICD.com recently mentioned in his blog that not all movies art oscar level and make you ponder life and love etc...and they shouldn't be. I think Bruno should be accepted as an outrageous, funny, and all around zany movie.

Foeofthelance
2009-07-10, 04:22 PM
Brüno isn't making fun of homosexuality, it's making fun of homophobia. IMO Cohen is following in the same vein as Sarah Silverman (whose jokes weren't about race, they were about racism)
unfortunately, this distinction is going to get lost on the majority of theatergoers who will think it's funny because LOL HE'S GAY.

This is essentially my biggest problem with the movie, or at least this interpretation of it. Borat played a seemingly normal, if a little naive, character and then got people to admit things they otherwise would have denied. He was a total fool, but it was supposed to be lack of experience with American culture more than anything.

Bruno creates an idiot stereotype of homosexuals, shoves it down people's throats, then accuses them of homophobia when they gag. That's not funny, that's not satire or parody, its just offensive. Bruno deserves to be on the recieving end of a colony drop not because he's gay, straight, or crooked like a corkscrew, but because he's just that damned annoying.

Seraph
2009-07-10, 07:15 PM
{Scrubbed}

Roland St. Jude
2009-07-10, 07:34 PM
Sheriff of Moddingham: This thread, and indeed a serious discussion of the topic, is too political/religious. And now it's gone hostile, too. Thread locked.