Bruno (18)

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The ViewLondon Review

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Review byMatthew Turner10/07/2009

Four out of Five stars
Running time: 82 mins

Sacha Baron Cohen's latest outing is undeniably hilarious and you can't help but admire the sheer chutzpah involved in making the film, but if you didn't like Borat, then this is not for you.

What's it all about?
Comedian Sacha Baron Cohen (Da Ali G Show, Borat) plays Bruno, an outrageously gay Austrian fashionista who gets fired from his job as the presenter of Funkyzeit Mit Bruno after an unfortunate incident involving a fashion show and a velcro suit. Declaring his desire to become the biggest Austrian celebrity since Hitler, Bruno heads for America in search of fame and fortune, with only his devoted assistant Lutz (Gustaf Hammarsten) for company.

Along the way, Bruno has several amusing encounters: he tries to seduce Presidential hopeful Ron Paul, goes hunting with a group of rednecks, has a brief stint in the US Army, appears on a talk show with his newly acquired African baby OJ (Chibundu and Chigozie Orukwowu) and winds up making out in a cage in front of an angry crowd of rednecks who were expecting a wrestling match. As with Borat, it's never entirely clear just how scripted each scene is (some are, others clearly aren't) but the results are usually hilarious.

The Good
Again, as with Borat, Baron Cohen completely disappears into the character, although Bruno is significantly less likeable than Borat and his targets (perhaps through necessity, owing to the heightened recognition factor) are much stupider this time round. However, when he finds the right victims, the comedy is nothing short of inspired, most notably in the scene where Bruno visits a medium and then mimes a series of explicit sex acts with the spirit of Milli Vanilli. It's clear that both Baron Cohen and the film crew were willing to take extraordinary risks in the name of comedy (the scene with the actual terrorist leader beggars belief) and you have to admire them for that, even if the results don't always work.

The Bad
The film's biggest problem is that it retreads much of the same ground as Borat and you can't help feeling it could have gone further, especially in confronting America's widespread homophobia.

Worth seeing?
Bruno is outrageously crude, cringe-makingly embarrassing and frequently offensive, but it's also hysterically funny for much of its 82 minutes. If you liked Borat, you'll love Bruno but if you didn't, steer well clear. Please note: there is currently a snipped 15 version doing the rounds, so make sure you see the proper 18 version.

Bruno has been reviewed by 1 users
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Content updated: 23/10/2017 01:36

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