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lady_wakasa [userpic]

Cultural Learnings

November 25th, 2006 (04:14 pm)

So, last night I went to see Borat.

I can see Sacha Baron Cohen's genius (and the man is definitely fearless). I saw the references to things ranging from the Little Tramp (mistaken for Hitler, even) to Communist boorishness, and recognized the jabs at the audience's smugness about itself. The movie is extremely well-crafted.

The only problem for me was that this isn't the kind of stuff that makes me laugh. I'm much more into subtlety (although Monty Python is a very notable exception), and SBC is nothing if not blunt. Oh, I laughed at things and in places, but this came across as funny in small doses (skits), but not quite as funny as a full-length movie. I started watching the structure of the House Cohen Built more than the furnishings.

It may be that this is more specifically British humor than it seems on the surface. SBC reminds me a bit of Benny Hill (whom I could not stand). The Brit mentioned a few weeks back how surprised he was that Borat was doing so well in the States; he loves the humor, but didn't think it would translate very well. I've seen a couple of Ali G episodes, and overall they worked for me (although they were reaching in a couple of spots). It may just be that irreverence is spelled slightly differently in the UK, and I'm separated from the movie by a common language.

So - entertaining, although not a solid laughfest in my mental lexicon. I will be interested to see what comes out of SBC's mind next, though.