Sacha Baron Cohen has found a formula: adopt a character you know nothing about, throw political correctness out the window, make use of crass humour, make more use of crass humour, offend as many people as possible, repeat with a different character.
His latest formulaic film not only manages to anger many people but also fails to amuse people according to most reviews. Though the film is likely to make you laugh here and there, if you are a fan of his other films and generally averse to intelligence, it is unlikely to inspire the same admiration his first film Borat garnered, as the use of stereotypes and toilet humour understandably becomes dated.
The story revolves around a trip by a ruthless anti-western and anti-Semitic dictator to the United Nations which goes horribly wrong and blah blah blah. Does one really need to know the plot to the film? What you need to know is that it will play shamelessly on stereotypes of groups to which Cohen does not belong and is not a source of authority on, as with his other films, and that it will feature unrefined humour and no wit.
That is not to say that crass humor is always bad or that the film cannot afford many a few laughs, but even for films of this calibre, it will probably miss its mark. Fortunately, there is always the option to snooze or go to the concession stand until the possible funny scenes come along, the operative word here being possible.
If your Christmas wish list included ‘Jackass: The Movie’ on Blu-ray, then give this a try. If, however, your idea of humour is more in line with a Woody Allen movie, then skip this and do something more meaningful with your life. Like wonder why Cohen makes these films.
(Hint: It has to do with money).
Showing at: Renaissance Nile City Cinema, Genena, Renaissance Downtown, Bandar (Maadi), and Renaissance Sun City, Golf City Cinema, and Renaissance 6th of October
Expendables 2, thankfully, does not take itself too seriously and its mix of self-deprecating humor and a star-studded cast is likely to please fans of large-budget, over-the-top action films by giving them everything they want in a concentrated dose. The plot revolves around a simple mission that goes wrong (sound familiar?) when one of their own gets killed and they seek revenge with the odds stacked against them. The film has predictably received mixed reviews. But if you are the kind of person going into it for heart-wrenching drama, or even just drama, rather than glorious exaggerated action, then you probably deserve to get a beating from Chuck Norris anyway.
Showing at: Renaissance Nile City Cinema, Genena, Renaissance Downtown, Renaissance Wonderland, and Renaissance Sun City.