At the insistence of Jolene and Jay (actually ran into him at Taste of India, which is cool) I finally saw Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan.
While Sacha Baron Cohen’s humor is definitely not for everyone (pretty over the top) it is exceedingly funny.
To recap: Borat is one of Sacha’s characters. He’s a Kazakhstan reporter coming to America to do a cultural exchange report.
Never mind the fact that Sacha’s speaking an odd mix of bullshit and Yiddish (it’s obviously not a Russian dialect, anyway. This was noted on NPR when they interviewed him). Or that he looks suspiciously unlike a Kazakh. No, he passes just fine stateside (except maybe in New York on the morning commute. Those people are equally pissed off at just about everyone.)
Live comedy abounds as he hoodwinks people on his tour into believing in his character. And to be honest he plays Borat to the hilt. At one point during filming he passes out and snaps back up still in character.
There’s quite a bit of outrageous material in here. Such as Borat chasing his traveling companion Azamat (Ken Davitian) naked down the hallway (of a prestigious hotel) waving a sex toy. Even so, I can’t bring myself to call it offensive; most of it is simply derogatory towards Sacha himself rather than demeaning toward others.
Everything considered, Borat is worth seeing. As long as you’re not offended by the content it’s hilarious. He affectively lampoons people by showing them as themselves, making for some classic scenes.