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02 Nov 2020

Home Video Review: 'Borat Subsequent Moviefilm' Is a Perfect Encapsulation of the Insanity That Is 2020

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Sacha Baron Cohen in Borat Subsequent Moviefilm. Sacha Baron Cohen in Borat Subsequent Moviefilm.

Given the year we are all having, it’s a fantastic time to watch a movie in which a deranged reporter from Kazakhstan offers up his young daughter as a gift to Mike Pence while wearing a Trump costume.

Why? It’s a shitshow that encapsulates the madness we continue to endure deep into 2020.

Borat Subsequent Moviefilm is a fine continuation of the madness Sacha Baron Cohen unleashed on the world with his original film 14 years ago. (That’s right … 14 YEARS AGO. Can you believe it?) This time out, instead of driving an ice cream truck with a big hairy guy and a bear, Borat is trekking across the country with his 15-year-old daughter (a very funny Maria Bakalova) in tow.

This, of course, presents an entirely different dynamic. Borat doesn’t know his “not a son” well, and he has difficulty treating her with respect—like allowing her to live outside of a cage, for example. Somehow, Cohen and director Jason Woliner manage to make their antics not only hilarious, but awkwardly heartwarming. Shit, this might just be the feel-good movie of the year.

As in the first film, Borat exposes the ugly, racist underbelly of America. While the previous film’s big moment was a staged (and hilarious) sequence with Pamela Anderson, the sequel’s big moments are unrehearsed and unbelievably pulled off.

The previously mentioned encounter with Pence is just a warmup for the big kahuna—and that would be Rudy Giuliani seemingly thinking he is going to get sexy time with Borat’s daughter during a hotel-room interview. (Note to all public figures: NEVER ACCEPT A HOTEL ROOM AS A SETTING FOR AN INTERVIEW, YOU DUMB ASSES!) Giuliani is gross, touchy-feely and patronizing during the fake interview with Bakalova—and then he walks straight into the hotel bedroom. His excuse for touching his thang in her presence—to be clear, the actress is in her 20s and never states her make-believe age—is that he was tucking in his shirt.

When did touching your dick become synonymous with tucking in your shirt? Rudy’s a lawyer; maybe he knows more about it. Maybe there’s some statute or writ or whatever somewhere that declares dick-touching as essential to tucking in one’s shirt on film.

All of the film’s setups work to varying degrees of success, and Cohen has delivered his best work since Borat’s first film venture. It’ll be interesting to see who will be governing this great land when a possible second sequel lands. Hopefully, it will be somebody with a better sense of humor than Mike Pence. Come, on you stick-in-the-mud … laugh a little. You got punked, and it’s funny.

As for Rudy … he should make sure interviews take place in Grand Central Station during rush hour.

Borat Subsequent Moviefilm is now streaming on Amazon Prime.

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