Thursday, August 9, 2012

The Dictator - Comedy of the Year

Heard so much about this film that I was actually afraid it would turn out bad due to the hype. Yet it surprised me that such a racist venture could also show love for different countrymen.
  The Dictator is directed by Larry Charles who also made the main actor's previous films Borat and Bruno. Written by Sacha Baron Cohen who plays the lead as usual in Charles' features with him, and co-written by three other screenwriters it could've turned out a slapstick comedy mess. But it turned out to be super enjoyable instead. The film was banned in the United Arab Emirates and many other Middle-Eastern countries for its depiction of Arabs. It made $167m off $67m worldwide. Sadly, it deserved more yet grossed more than Cohen's last motion picture with Charles  - Bruno ($133m worldwide). By the trailer it does look like a cliched performance by Cohen who had played similar global characters in past cinematic performances but this character's no joke. Hailing from UK I'm surprised Cohen threw the typical Arab accent so well that is better than, a typical Arab.
  The film follows Admiral General Aladeen, dictator of the fictional Republic of Wadiya, visiting the US. Wadiya is so finely shown that I actually thought it was real when I first glimpsed the trailer. The Dictator also contains spoofing of the 2011 movie based on Sadam Hussein's family The Devil's Double, which was legendary in its own right. And there are so many positive points its hard to make a compromise for negative critisism.
  Firstly, the acting. No doubt Cohen outshines the rest of the cast. Anna Faris of the Scary Movie franchise and Jason Mantzoukas who is lesser-known, are the other two that had performances worth blogging about. Ben Kingsley (Oscar winner) also has a prominent roles although his act wasn't Oscar-worthy. And not since Jim Carrey have I seen anybody satire so perfectly as Cohen. This guy is incredible as an actor and as a writer and you only need to see this film to confirm that. The foxy Megan Fox also has a cameo though I know most have viewed the YouTube trailer again for her (count my views too).
  Secondly, the writing. Although in most scenarios more than two screenplay author can doom a comedy to literary oblivion but not this time. There's not a single minute the film tries to make you laugh - and succeeds. It is so hard to find comedies nowadays with perfect writing. That goes for horror films as well. The follow-up on the plot is high-octane and you are even surprised at the scenes before Aladeen visits the States.
  However, the film does get predictable in the last 30 minutes but only a little. And also it depends a lot from its title character and fail to let the other members of the cast shine in their own way. 
  Finally, The Dictator is a must-watch for every 18+ out there. It swallows the racism with a lovable character and a satirically movable plot. Political themes are actually correctly discussed without referring to a particular country's negativity. Along with 21 Jump Street and The Three Stooges, The Dictator holds the crown for best comedy movie of 2012 (so far).

IMDB: 6.8/10.
RT:  58%.
BO101: 3.5/4.

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