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‘Bruno’: Why Sacha Baron Cohen got an NC-17 rating
Is the new film by the creator of 'Borat' too raunchy for general film audiences?
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he Motion Picture Association of America’s “‘no homo’ rule strikes again,” said Richard Lawson in Gawker. “Sacha Baron Cohen's new mockumentary, Bruno, in which he terrorizes straight men with flagrant gayness," has earned an NC-17 rating. One reason is clearly that the film includes a scene depicting gay fashionista Bruno having anal sex.

But there's time before Bruno’s scheduled July release to chop enough to earn an R rating, said Hilary Lewis in The Business Insider. That's something Sacha Baron Cohen can do to be safe while appealing the decision. Universal “won't release the movie” if it’s NC-17 and “seems to believe that, with edits, Bruno will get a more acceptable rating.”

Bruno is not to be missed, NC-17 or not,” said Stephan Horbelt in Gaywired. Sure, it has some controversial scenes, but it’s more than “simply shock-comedy.” The film’s protagonist, Bruno, “exposes and challenges” people’s “blatant racism and homophobia (and often sheer stupidity)” in his hilarious encounters with them.

Sacha Baron Cohen’s comedy would be more satisfying, said Rod Dreher in BeliefNet, if it weren’t so mean. The creator of the admittedly hilarious Borat filmed a scene for Bruno in Dallas and “pulled an ugly stunt tricking a local audience of Christians.” Is the film too raunchy? Maybe, but the main reason not to watch is Baron Cohen’s habit of “taking cheap shots at easy targets.”

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