Can the great buffoon do scripted comedy?
Sacha Baron Cohen’s forthcoming feature The Dictator, will be his first film with a script since 2002’s Ali G Indahouse.
Will it match up to expectations?
As the creator of Ali G, Borat and Brüno, Baron Cohen has given us three of the most sublimely vulgar comic characters of the modern age. In two weeks, we will possibly have a fourth. His new film, The Dictator, arrives in cinemas later this month and centres on General Colonel Doctor Aladeen, a cheerful north African despot whose diplomatic visit to the USA goes horribly awry. In a typically Baron Cohen-esque flourish, it is a loose adaptation of Zabibah and the King, a novel by the late Iraqi ruler Saddam Hussein.
Brüno and Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan, are the worst: they make me laugh until my lungs ache and cringe until my stomach muscles cramp. The measure of a successful Hollywood comedy is normally how good it makes you feel; a successful Baron Cohen film causes acute discomfort.
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