Sacha Baron Cohen's latest, Bruno, said Edward Douglas in Comingsoon.net, is "a much funnier film" than his last one, Borat. This time around, the comedian plays a flamboyantly gay Austrian fashionista on a quest for fame, and Cohen's "exaggerated caricature" finds "clever and inventive ways" to expose the rampant "homophobia in play in our country." Bruno "had me laughing loudly and almost in tears many times at some of the most insane things I've seen onscreen." (watch the trailer for Bruno)
Bruno is "daring and sometimes insightful," said Bill Goodykoontz in The Arizona Republic, and it's also "often hilarious." But it's "not quite up to the lofty standards of Borat." (watch the trailer for Borat) Cohen's Borat character "was the classic stranger in a strange land, allowing him ample opportunity to poke holes in all manner of American culture," while Bruno spends most of the film "flaunting" his sexuality, and "it's too one-note to sustain."
"Borat was such a hit that it's a struggle to find people gullible enough to not recognize" Sacha Baron Cohen now, said Roger Moore in the Orlando Sentinel, so "few people worth mocking are fooled by the disguise any more"—and "the strain shows." And most of the time, "Bruno feels like Borat's weak-wristed brother, too much of it just a gay cliché aimed straight at the American bigot belt."
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- This is what happens when Republicans actually enact their radical agenda
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- How I dug myself out of debt — and stayed that way
- Russia is stealthily threatening America with nuclear war
- 6 things the happiest families all have in common
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- Why so many Christians won't back down on gay marriage
- 10 things you need to know today: September 18, 2014
- 6 super-helpful iOS8 tricks you probably don't know about
- The science of sex: 4 harsh truths about dating and mating
Subscribe to the Week