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Tuesday, 10 July 2012

The Dictator Review 2012

Sacha Baron Cohen returns to chuckle the audience with another wacky character, a "Mockumentary" fictional portrayal of a Dictator by the name of Aladeen.

The republic of Wadiya is summoned by the oppressive ruling of Aladeen, who's portrayal of a disruptive and in-human individual is far from mundane. Although Aladeen is as egotistic and ruthless as they come, his hilarious persona sees him travel to New York to clear up an apparent accusation of his holdings in Wadiya.

The South African oil rich country he dictates has had eye brows raised for strong rumours concerning a mass holding of nuclear weapons. America, being the most convenient (sarcastic)country to voice its opinion, calls for Aladeen to voice a clear explanation for these accusations.

It is when Aladeen arrives in New York for a conference that the trip goes awry and where the elements of his true character and comedy combine. He is soon found a lost puppy when an incident involving his kidnapping sees him left on the streets of New York with his signature beard being removed leaving him unrecognisable but vulnerable to the public which could be a bad thing in terms of his reputation.

Aladeen, who would rather shoot himself in the head than see his beloved Wadiya turn into a Democracy state, is fighting for his country and leadership as Tahir replaces Aladeen with a foney Dictator, who in time, will agree to a Democracy free republic.

The Dictator offers a decent cast. Ben Kingsley plays Tahir, a corrupt friend of who in truth wants rid of him, leaving himself to take the throne of Wadiya. Anna Faris is Zoey, a helpful individual who runs a food store in the heart of the city. Oblivious to the man without the beard, she offers to help Aladeen with work and offers him a job in her store.

Minor cameos include Megan Fox, and a bit-part role featuring the always hilarious John C. Reilly who is Clayton, the head of security at a Waldorf hotel who assures Aladeen of his safety.

So what does the Dictator offer in difference to Sacha Baron's previous creations. It was nice to see a scripted concept from Sacha. Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan (2006) was brilliant and will go down as one of greatest comedies of all time. But Brüno (2009) over stepped the mark in terms of the sheer desperate attempt to make the audience laugh, failing to accomplish what Borat had done in terms of originality. Sure, the character was gay and we found his feminist personality fun at first, but all in all it was highly forgettable. The Dictator succeeds in keeping you entertained, offering some hilarious, yet unexpected moments in the movie where you will be like "Did that just happen"?. Obviously, like  Borat and Bruno, it gains notice through its level of controversy. Sacha does indeed over step the mark relating to real life Dictators and he does it with hilarious originality.

The Dictator is nothing special but is worth a watch, especially for its cheap laughs and outlandish character. I was delighted to see Sacha Baron descend from the concept that brought his British persona to life in Hollywood. Ali G Indahouse was the first fictional character from Sacha in what was hugely successful in Britain. To see Sacha reform to script writing once again was enjoyable and makes for a decent watch.

Overall: Don't be fooled by Bruno or Borat, very different and Unexpectedly humorous

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