Early Bruno review!
I got word right before the BRUNO footage was slated to debut at SXSW that Universal was holding the first test screening for the film in Marina del Ray. I tried as best I could to mobilize the JoBlo crew out in LA to crash the screening and write back with a report. But it was insane late notice and the audience was already locked. Lucky for us, a JoBlo reader happened to catch a later test screening of the film and probably heard my bitching about missing the SXSW footage and decided to have mercy on my soul by sending in a review. He/She definitely dug what they saw and only treads into some minor spoilers. Check it out below!
Vassup Joblo! Just got back from a preview screening of Brüno, and wow, all I can say is...if laughter is good for you, I just burned about 1000 calories. I was a huge fan of the film version of Borat and Da Ali G Show (and thus have always been a huge Bruno fan) so needless to say, I had high expectations for this flick. And unlike some highly anticipated films of late, I can say with pride that this is one funtastic voyage you'll want to take again and again.
I'm gonna keep this review as spoiler-free as possible, which is tough, because I really just want to talk about some of the unbelievable hijinx I just witnessed. Where the former film played on the country's prejudice toward Muslims and Arabs, this flick (obviously) plays off the ever-present homophobia that exists today, but yet again, primarily in the south (no problem with that!).
Sasha Cohen comes up with some truly hilarious, fish-out-of-water situations for his gay Austrian fashion guru to get into, including a camping trip with some hunters, a military bootcamp, a karate studio, an African-American talkshow, ISRAEL and LEBANON and so, so many more. I could talk about this film for 2 hours and not cover all the funny scenes. The last time I cried laughing may have been during Borat, and in this film, I cried at least 3 times.
So is it better than Borat?! Well, no (but it's close). This flick is clearly a more staged affair, which is a bit of a bummer (though the majority of it is still real), but thats ok. The amazing thing about Cohen and his humor is that, unlike most comedies these days where the laughs come quick in the form of dialogue or a kick to the balls, this film has entire scenes where you wo'nt stop howling. Its the SITUATIONS that are funny and I wish we got films like that more often.
Let me just say if you thought Borat pushed the envelope, well, this film shoves that same envelope off a friggin' cliff. I'm sure some of the stuff I saw will never make the final cut (like several closeups of a big swinging dick!), but I hope the MPAA lets most or all of this thing through, because, some of the biggest laughs come from some of the most extreme stuff I've ever seen on film.
Kudos to you Sasha Baren Cohen (and Universal), for taking one of the most anticipated 'sequels' in recent memory and exceeding my expectations.