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Justin’s movie review of “The Dictator” from Alex’s Mixed Bag 26th May 2012

This week I saw the “The Dictator”

This is the new one by Australia’s Favourite Son in Law Sacha Baron Cohen.  It follows such films as Bruno, Ali G in Da House and the classic Borat.

Set in the fictitious North East African Country of Wadiya, power crazy dictator Haffaz Aladeen (played by Cohen) rules the country with an Iron fist, violating the basic human rights of his citizens ,executing people at will and housing weapons of mass destruction, all of which don’t go down well with The United Nations.

So Aladeen gets summoned to New York to address the United Nations and to answer for his crimes and to be questioned about his regimes nuclear programme. Little does he know, his right hand man Tahir played by Ben Kinsgley is planning a coup using the help of a body double.

Now there is a failed assassination attempt on Aladeen, where he ends up on the street with no beard and is unrecognisable, and this is where he meets the funny, short haired feminist vegan organic grocer Zoey played by Anna Faris.

So the Hilarity and continues from there, and by hilarity I mean a few over the top gags here and there, and some light boundary pushing, but nothing that wasn’t done before and a lot better in Borat.

This one is scripted as opposed to that improv mockumentry style of film such as Borat and Bruno, which may be one of the reasons it didn’t work as well.

I can’t explain exactly how, but it just didn’t hit the mark that often, it was funny but not brilliant. There were also parts of the film that seemed a tad cheesy. To be honest, it was one level above that rubbish Adam Sandler film from a few years ago called “Don’t Mess with the Zohan”

The acting was pretty good, and both Faris and Cohen have very good comic timing and they were pretty amusing together. And it has Ben Kingsley in it, so you always feel smarter when you watch something he is in.

I don’t know whether it was the expectation I bought into this film or the film itself, but I left the cinema pretty disappointed.

I give this 2 and a half stars.

Watch the trailer here

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