Review: Brüno

Brüno | Larry Charles, 2009

I was not a fan of Borat, Sacha Baron Cohen’s last project to get to the bottom of American culture. However, I did not hate it and admired it for it’s creativity, ambition, and hoped that Cohen would get an Oscar nomination for best actor. This year he was back with another film with the same formula with Brüno.

This time, he played Brüno, an Austrian fashion reporter. One day, he gets blacklisted from fashion events after he brought down a fashion show in Milan. For this reason, he decides to travel to the United States to become famous, and he is willing to do anything to achieve it.

The reason why I didn’t like this is because we pretty much saw everything that Cohen could do with Borat. That movie was a truly interesting look into American culture. Although I didn’t find it as hilarious as most people did, I laughed a few times, and I was glad I saw it by the end. Brüno goes for the same effect, but it feels as if we’ve seen it before.

Another problem I had is that the movie was more plotted. In Borat there was a bit of plot that Kicked it in the end about him wanting to meet Pamela Anderson, but that was until the very end. This one, however, is all about capturing Brüno trying to become famous and doing the most outrageous things to achieve that. Such things include adopting an african kid, making a TV show, interviewing and being kidnapped by a terrorist, making a sex tape with Ron Paul, and becoming straight. At the same time he is trying to reveal that America is homophobic, but the plot takes over, and frankly I did not care about Brüno’s attempts at becoming famous.

Cohen’s latest attempt to bring to light the huge flaws of american culture failed this time around. His performance is great, but that is not enough to save it. The parts that are supposed to be funny just turn out to be awkward, and not the funny kind of awkward. I hope he gives these experiments a break so he can come up with some material worthy of his talent.

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