Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Borat

So I finally saw Borat. Can someone please show me the difference between this movie and the "field reports" that The Daily Show used to do? Comedy Central had the good sense to kill those off, just as they had the good sense to ditch Craig Kilborn.

Kilborn and Cohen have a lot in common actually. The content and delivery of their comedy would have been poignant satire in someone else's hands, but something in their nature spoils their words before they reach your ears. It gives you a feeling like, "Yeah, I get your point, but I don't think you really care one way or another."

Anyway, check out this interview with Steve Carell explaining why he was never that crazy about the field reports in the first place.

It was neither kind nor funny to me to go after people who just didn't deserve it. It was sort of shooting fish in a barrel. I think it bordered on mean sometimes, and I... Once Jon took the reins, that changed.

...when we did go after someone, it was generally someone who deserved it. A white supremacist, or a Nazi, or someone who was, you know, good fodder.


Cohen picks a few good targets, but his nihilism and laziness denudes those segments of satire and turns the movie into nothing but the basest and easiest kind of humor: "Hey, I have brought actual feces into this room where it is inappropriate to even speak of feces." That kind of humor always gets a belly laugh--there were a lot of belly laughs in the movie--but I don't understand the praise Borat is getting. It really is one-third Kilborn-era Daily Show, one-third Jackass, and one-third boring.
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