What Did You Think of Borat 2?

Over the weekend, we rolled the dice and watched the new Borat movie. I had read a review that said it had “a surprising amount of heart,” which made me quite curious about it…and in a very odd way, it actually delivered on that promise.

Here are my thoughts and takeaways from the film:

  • Around halfway through the movie, I realized that at least part of the movie was filmed during the pandemic, all the way through June of this year. It was surreal to a mockumentary filmed around real people in the US. I have no idea if they were able to do this responsibly.
  • I’m not sure if it’s a matter of editing, producers, or sheer luck, but a few of the regular people in the movie are pitch perfect. My favorite person wasn’t there for comedic effect, though: Rather, there’s a middle-aged babysitter who–completely unscripted, as far as I can tell–offers some of the sweetest and most heartfelt advice at two different times. Watching her just might restore your faith in humanity.
  • On a similar note, probably my favorite part of the Borat movies is when Borat interacts with someone whose beliefs are completely the opposite of mine…yet they’re still good people. In this film, Borat quarantines with two conservative, gun-toting conspiracy theorists. I can’t relate to anything they say, yet they are kind, decent, and caring of a complete stranger.
  • There’s a very clever pairing of scenes involving the female lead in the movie (Borat’s daughter). I won’t spoil anything, but it starts with a cupcakes and takes a very different twist after that. It’s either impressive writing, dumb luck, or a combination of the two.
  • Last, if you’ve heard about the movie, it’s probably because of a headline about a scene featuring Rudy Giuliani. It’s right at the end of the movie, and wow…it left me completely dumbfounded. I’m sure that sort of thing happens all the time by politicians and celebrities, but it’s unnerving and disturbing to see such wildly inappropriate behavior (and on film!).

Have you seen Borat 2? If so, what did you think of it?

4 thoughts on “What Did You Think of Borat 2?”

  1. I have a complicated view right now. I have LOVED SBC over his entire career. He is a comic genius.

    BUT…

    This summer he came to Olympia to stir up racism in a very tense environment. He staged a rally that was meant to incite hate. When he was run out of town, he blamed the racists in a self serving manner.

    https://time.com/5897501/conspiracy-theory-misinformation/

    In reality, he was run out of town for engaging in racist behavior. I can no longer trust or enjoy his work after seeing his duplicity. The scene in the news about Rudy G is nothing to the lies he told about what happened in Olympia. His action here was dangerous, immoral and unethical. We have had blood spilled on our streets this year over these issues. His rally could have led to more bloodshed. I cannot ignore this. I rarely “cancel” someone, but in this case, I pick my town over him and his hypocrisy.

    Here is the letter I wrote to Time to correct the record, which they did not do.

    Dear Time,

    I am fact checking your article by Sacha Baron Cohen. I live in Olympia, WA where the incident cited at the end of the article happened. SBC is distorting the situation greatly.

    He came to Olympia to incite racism during a time when the situation was very volatile, and his actions alone, done for PROFIT, I might add, put our community in danger, and incited violence in his wake.

    Mr. Cohen set up an event with an out of state promoter to lure conservatives DT. They worked with locals, who responded in good faith. On the day of the event, Mr. Cohen attempted to get the crowd to sing a racist song, as he is wont to do.

    But in Olympia, he did not get the reaction he wanted. His plants in the audience tried to get them to go along, but they rejected his racism, and yes, chased him off the stage. It was the most anti-racist act I have seen in Olympia all summer. They rejected racism. They tried to pull the power on his mic, but his producers were protecting the generator. They did block his vehicle, because they were angry at his racism!

    Please note, at the end of the third link I provided below, the local organizer backs all of this up, speaking to how they used force to prevent the locals from stopping his performance. The organizers apologize to the crowd, and ask, How can one American do this to another?

    Please review this footage, and issue a correction to the article.

    I am a huge fan of Cohens, but can no longer be, in good conscience. He came to harm my community and we rejected it. THAT is the real story, not SBC self serving account.

    Thank you, and I respectfully will be looking for a correction/clarification. I would welcome speaking to someone if they want more details on the effect this had on Olympia.

    Candy Mercer

    Links to videos to back my claims:

    Local news coverage

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UBv39yel6JI

    Primary source footage from bluegrass band

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IjxrgCeliZ4

    Longer video. I am a local journalist and this account pretty much backs up my reporting

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PQfOzKjmEU0&t=2s

    So yeah, having had my city be a victim in his games, I can no longer support his work. It is one thing when he gets an organic reaction that exposes hate, but it is another when he goes out of his way to set up a scenario to encourage hate. This was the latter, and it was cheap, in addition to being an epic comic failure.

    You know I recently cited the naked manfight in the first Borat as one of my favorite comedy scenes ever. And the cheese bit, in the extras where they show the whole thing, so funny. I am sad over this, and yeah, sort of feel betrayed.

    Reply
      • Yup, some shell group out of CA paid for the staging, sound system, security etc, they pretended to be conservatives. It was a complete set up. I am not sure why he picked Olympia.

        I have friends who were there and saw it go down, in addition to the video footage.

        I do have a feeling of betrayal. Like I said, it is one thing to present things happening organically, it is another to set people up like this. It was very well planned.

        If you do watch the footage, you can hear the pain in the local organizers voice.

        My community is not racist. The conservatives giving him the boot was the most legit anti-racist action I have seen all summer in the PNW. I was impressed with how the conservatives handled this.

        Reply
  2. We enjoyed the film; however, it didn’t have quite the same impact and humour as the first film, primarily because everyone seemed to be in on the joke — everyone knew Sascha Baron Cohen. At least, this was the case in comparison to the first film.

    Obviously the “daughter” was included as an unknown factor to dupe a few people with humourous results.

    As someone who is taking the pandemic excruciatingly seriously — even in a state of Australia where we haven’t seen a case of community transmission in nearly seven months — I did wonder about how they were filming some of this responsibly. Possibly a lot of it was done before the full extent of what was going on was known?

    Reply

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