CRITICAL / FILM OPINION – Borat will have waited until the last moments of Donald Trump’s mandate to come out of his cave and come to humiliate a country that is accumulating pots and pans. The reporter returns to Amazon Prime Video in a second film with still creaky humor.
Borat 2 : more than ten years later, he returns to attack the United States
In extremis, a few days before a presidential vote watched by the whole world, Sacha Baron Cohen puts on the Borat costume for a new feature film. 14 years after the previous one, during which we accompanied him on his trip to the United States to bring back to Kazakhstan ideas to be a better nation. A comedy composed of several sketches, where the actor managed to make fun of Americans. A film anchored in a particular time, when Bush Jr. was in power.
If his successor, Barack Obama, did not do all good things at the head of the country, there was not a favorable context for Borat to come back to do his own. On the other hand, with the criticized Donald Trump, a golden bridge stands in front of him. Since 2017, he will have seen the current president chain embarrassing moments, prove his inability to manage such a global force. If he was able to reach the White House, it is because part of the people support him. It is of him that will be question.
At the start of this sequel, we learn that Borat was sentenced to the gulag after humiliating Kazakhstan in the first. But the government decides to remove him from this galley and send him back to the United States, with a new objective: give a gift to Vice President Mike Pence in the hope of securing the sympathy of Donald Trump. After a few stopovers, the reporter arrives in Uncle Sam’s country via Texas. A state which sided with the incumbent president. The rest ? A sequence of embarrassing situations, where Borat presses on sensitive subjects during sequences which seem more or less prepared to obtain the desired effect. He also distinguished himself as a father who wanted to educate his daughter (Maria Bakalova) with convictions from another time. The novelty then arises in what is around the provocations, in this relationship with his child, on which he changes his gaze little by little. A meager scenario comes to support the whole and aspires to surf on a surge of tenderness.
America takes it for its rank
There is often this doubt between what belongs to fiction or to a hidden camera. We cannot take away from Sacha Baron Cohen his devoted attitude to give himself for 1h30. The demonstration is a little too deep, often in very bad taste and not very pleasing to the eye, but the willful spirit of the actor gives rise to some striking sequences. Four remain in memory. The first, when Cohen disguised as Trump infiltrates a Mike Pence meeting to give him his daughter. The second, when he enters a synagogue disguised as a Jew to await an attack that will end his life. The third, when he takes the stage of a far-right rally to sing. The last, when his daughter traps Rudy Giuliani – Donald Trump’s lawyer is filmed with her hand in her pants. The part of the truth that we unseal speaks volumes and highlights the known failings of American society.
Despite these obvious examples, Borat 2 does not enrich the debate so much. Not all of the topics covered are very new. The stupidity expressed by most of the people encountered is not surprising, as the evidence is already abundant. The Americans who think that the Chinese have contaminated the world on purpose, the hatred towards Democrats, the tendentious behavior of the elites towards women … We already knew all that. Borat arrives as if he came out of his cave and hadn’t known anything since 2006. But, we, we know. By dint of scandals, posts on social networks, disputes.
Less surprising than the first film, Borat 2 is a reminder of the inventory. We want to say that they are all necessary at the moment, to try to reverse the trend at the polls at the beginning of November. The credits also encourage people to vote. If it will not remain in the annals like the previous one, let it serve (on its scale) at least for that.
Borat 2: New mission directed by Jason Woliner, on Amazon Prime Video on 23 october 2020. Above the trailer. Find all our trailers here.