Tuesday, June 16, 2009

I'm Gay. Can I Decide What Offends Me? Please?

Here we go again. Melissa at Shakesville has her stinger out for Sacha Baron-Cohen's upcoming "trainwreck" movie Brüno.
It would rock my world if, on July 10, the day Brüno was scheduled to open, Sacha Baron-Cohen instead announced that the entire thing was a scam, designed to reveal the depth of the American media's hostility toward real, ordinary gay people, and every scheduled showing of Brüno would actually be a screening of The Celluloid Closet.


Instead, it will just be another straight dude being a hugely offensive wanker and calling it edgy, dismissing his critics as humorless losers.

The comment thread is already chock-full of hostility to his prior film, Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan, which I enjoyed immensely despite instincts to the contrary before I actually watched it. I hadn't planned to even watch it until it was highly recommended to me by a friend -- a Jewish woman in New York.

Favorite quote from the comment thread at Shakesville thus far:

Nothing about the "Borat" movie was funny to me. Plus, I was triggered during several scenes.

No doubt! Those fucking triggers are everywhere these days.

You see, I wasn't much of a fan of Sacha Baron-Cohen's work prior to Borat. Those interviews of politicians while he was in character, unknown to those being interviewed, made me a tad uncomfortable. I guess I have empathy. Even if the person being interviewed was a politician whose views I absolutely despise. I suppose I prefer my comedians to be more up-front about their work, without the deceit. It's much more funny to me when it is bold, brazen, and open, and clearly a character, however flamboyant he or she might be.

And this is precisely (well, one reason) I enjoyed Borat so much more than I expected. (That, and the pot.)

I will withhold judgment until I see the film. Unfortunately, that may be awhile since I don't go to to the cinema. I'll catch the DVD, which means 2010 or 2011. It may be the unfunniest thing I've ever seen. It may well be complete and total homophobic rubbish. I'll decide. But the fireworks from Shakesville when the film is released will surely entertain me in the meantime.

I do hope the film is "edgy."

And as for Melissa's criticism of GQ? I don't buy or read the shit. This is marketing and advertising. This is how they do things, not just with this film; with any film. That's how it works. When you buy a magazine, you are buying advertising.

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