"Bruno" 'Worse than Cancer'

Genres: Comedy
Running Time:
1 hr. 22 min.
Release Date:
July 10th, 2009 (wide)
MPAA Rating:
R for pervasive strong and crude sexual content, graphic nudity and language.
Universal Pictures

Directed by: Larry Charles

JJ Rating: C-

Bruno (Sacha Baron Cohen) tries to be funny. Bruno.

If my title offends then you know for sure this movie is not for you. I took that line from the movie itself. There is a scene where Bruno has a TV show that is viewed by a panel that wrote comments about what they thought. That was one of the comments and it so fit the entire movie experience for me.

I was not offended by anything that I saw in this movie. I laughed a lot. However, the problem is that the movie isn’t 20 minutes long. It’s an hour and two minutes longer. An hour and two minutes of NOT funny and on top of it not being funny it just dragged out a couple of jokes in hopes it would ride a funny wave of some sort.

I’m pretty sure if you liked Borat you will find this movie so not equal. You might laugh and you might like it, but you will not like it more than. There’s no way in hell this movie is better than Borat. That is, unless, your humor is so corroded it turned retarded then maybe so. Normally I don’t feel the need to mock people’s humor, but I make an exception for this trailer trash.

Let me get rid of what I thought was terrible. Sacha Baron Cohen is not funny enough in this film. I laughed more from the reactions of the people than his stupid antics. Except (I love exceptions) when he spoke to the terrorist. There and only there did he really shine. He totally showed his interview skills that people fell in love with there. He did some great stuff with the terrorist and then he tried to stop fighting by doing negotiations and that was great too. The song he serenaded them with was fantastic.

Totally distracted myself; back to the bad things. The other bad thing is the constant nudity. Prude would be totally offended by the nudity. I just find nudity stupid and totally lacking in much humor let alone the novelty of shock nudity is totally worn off and is now just obnoxious. Oh and a helicopter penis (if you know that move) is so not a sight that makes one laugh other than I wonder if someone is offended by that, which is why most of this movie isn’t funny because it hinges on someone being offended. Most of the movie is not smart enough like that interview the terrorist bit as well as the negotiations thing.

There was so much good that was not harvested from what he had at his finger tips. So much trashiness that was embolden for nothing but shock value and shock only lasts, as we all know, a few seconds. Minutes is how long he stretched some of those shock moments, which totally over did it and turned shock into boring.

His humor is not done with malicious intent. He is not Perze Hilton by any means (thank god). But those that enjoy his antics can be vicious with what he pulls from people by his need to constantly shock. I find that troubling. Cohen is harmless, for the most part, and can be very funny in a satire manner, even though this movie is mostly boring. If you do a shock movie the next one has to be more shock worthy and that is one of the problems, he focused way too much on the shock and not enough on the funny.

The way too much focus is proved with the Arkansas’ bit with the cage fighters turned gay lovers. I understand what was shown there with the shocked crowed and all, but it lasted far too long and totally turned it into something that was not satire and not funny and defiantly not good movie making other than to turn some people on who like that kind of lustful fakeness. Disturbing.

I stated that there were good parts and one of them was with the three country guys. Those guys were irritated that they had to deal with Bruno but so funny in their reactions. I give them major credit for being funny and not being brutal (or maybe that was cut out) in their over all comments and actions.

Then there was a bit where Bruno went to a swinger’s party. The majority of that party was crass and stupid and not that funny. It was mainly just “shocking” if one didn’t know what to expect. Then he gets pulled into a room with a silicon bust of a woman and she whips him and it is so real because I could see the marks it was leaving behind; and because he was getting beaten (justification for me sitting through this crap) I laughed and enjoyed it.

The Dallas’ talk show was great. The audience’s reaction to Bruno having a black child was awesome. I laughed. I think I laughed more that it was Dallas because everyone in Houston, Austin and San Antonio thinks Dallas sucks and this is just proof of that. It’s very scientific.

And finally the end of the movie is very good. I cannot speak more on that because the actual surprise of it is far better if left unknown. If only that was how he handled most of the movie it would have been much better. /end 20 minutes.

I thought that the people he was ‘punking’ were far funnier than Cohen was as Bruno. This is not a movie you’d laugh at again if you saw it again. It would lose 85% of why it was funny upon a second viewing. This is NOT The Hangover. It cannot and will not retain its humor.

People have said that Bruno is a satire. Ha. No. The only way it could be considered to be satirical is if Wal-Mart sold an off brand of satire. That is the only way.

I don’t know what it says about people that laughed hard in this movie all the way through. I almost want to say that those kinds of people have a lot of built up rage for the people that are mocked in this movie. One of the ‘punked’ victims said it best: It’s worse than Cancer. Just put Bruno in there for ‘it’s’ and you got a very profound statement, indeed.


T_800_System said...

I think you just have a very bleak sense of humour. Whilst a helicopter penis might be crude and even grotesque - it proved to have much comedic value (atleast it did in the cinema I was at).

J_Jammer said...

There is a difference in laughing because it's stupid and laughing because it's funny. I laughed...but because I thought it was stupid. And as the box office proves, I was not the only one that thought it was terrible. Those that did told other people and in this recession people are choosy. It has lost due to that. I have not heard one person state that they liked it to me outside of the internet.

The idea that anything can be funny is one of those sweeping statements that English teachers warn their students against. The correct way to state that is anyone can think it's funny, which is not the same thing as it being funny.

Anonymous said...

The original Bruno skits in the Ali G show were great (watch them if you haven't), they were clever and full of satire.

The movie Bruno is mainly based on shock humour, and shock humour gets old pretty quickly. I'm still trying to understand how SBC managed to screw up this movie that badly, when he clearly had a good character on his hands.

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