The problem is I still didn't enjoy watching a movie full of blatant and inappropriate prejudices. The other problem is that Borat's target audience doesn't seem to understand the nuance that this movie is belittling Borat and anyone like him, from what I overhear from this movie's fans they instead imitate and admire Borat. I can't imagine that this was the intent of the movie.
The full title of this movie is Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan and the premise is that Borat is a Kazakh who is being sent by his government to film a documentary about America to help Kazakhstan improve itself. Borat travels around the US interacting with people who really believe they are being filmed for a Kazakh documentary and proceed to do and say things that I hope they wouldn't admit to anyone else.
This premise makes for a shocking movie full of uncomfortable moments. If you watched Borat and didn't cringe there is likely something wrong with you. For my part I cringed in almost every scene and didn't really laugh that often. I did laugh at times and to be honest not every person on the movie treated Borat poorly, in fact some people were downright nice to him.
In the end, after the movie stopped and I breathed a sigh of relief that it was finally over, I immediately wondered why so many people have given this movie such high praise. Cohen is not doing anything new here, admittedly he is one of the people who perfected this type of comedy years ago and this movie takes it to a new level; but the fact remains that Borat is not a new idea and mostly the movie is just full of horrible racism and sexism which now get repeated every day by people who've seen this movie and think it's hilarious.
There were some funny moments amidst the cringing and Cohen would have literally risked his life a few times to do the things he did so I hesitate to give this movie the lowest rating I've ever given.
I certainly put Borat on my 'Don't Watch It' list though and give it a value of $2.
March 20, 2007
Borat - $2
Borat was hard to watch. I understand that Sacha Baron Cohen isn't actually a racist, I assume that because he is Jewish himself he is able to get away with the anti-semitism of his character Borat who has to be considered the most racist fictional character in history. I also get that this is a satirical movie which paints racism and sexism as the refuge of idiots.