Sunday, November 12, 2006

Borat: Fantasy vs. reality

Saw "Borat" yesterday afternoon and am still getting the hiccups every time I think of the naked wrestling scene, but here's an open question for those who have seen it: which scenes do you think were staged and which do you think were "real"? (As real as anything where Sacha Baron Cohen is playing Borat can be.) A few spoiler-y thoughts after the jump...

Well, we have pretty good evidence that the frat guys weren't in on the joke, judging by their lawsuit, and I can't imagine a circumstance where Pamela Anderson wasn't aware of what was happening (especially one that wouldn't result in a savage on-camera beating for Cohen). And the hooker was an actress. But wouldn't Cohen and the guy playing Azamat be arrested for running around the hotel in the nude, let alone disrupting that awards dinner? And the kids reacting to the bear definitely seemed like they had been coached.

What say you? Disagreements? Any other obviously staged scenes I'm leaving out?

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Salon had this to offer:
http://www.salon.com/ent/feature/2006/11/10/guide_to_borat/index_np.html

Michaela said...

I find it hilarious that men are having such trouble with that scene. Either that, or I've just spent so much time on the Internet that nothing shocks me anymore...

That and the rodeo scene were the two scenes that made me laugh so hard I cried. Heh.

Matt said...

My understanding is that Anderson herself was aware, but that the bystanders and at least some of the security guards were not. And I suspect many had some idea what was going on, but not specifics.

Alan Sepinwall said...

So the B&B owners weren't in on it? Huh. After I posted this, that scene occurred to me as the only other one that seemed obviously fake.

And Michaela, I have absolutely no problem whatsoever with the wrestling. One of funniest five minutes I've ever seen. I'm just skeptical about the reality of it (the spilling over into the hotel parts, I mean), and the Salon article doesn't mention it at all.

jim treacher said...

I dunno, the security guys in the conference room seemed pretty authentically pissed.

Now it turns out Cohen kind of screwed over the people in that Romanian village. You know, his "friends" and "family." They're pissed too. Although if your town is literally named Mud, maybe some comedian is the least of your problems.

dez said...

Pamela Anderson admitted she was in on the joke, but that the security guards and others were not. I think he was also arrested after the naked fight incident.

If those villagers hadn't said anything, I never would have known they weren't all paid actors on a set. I hope the producers do something nice for them. But I'll still laugh at those scenes because they were funny.

That naked fight is the scene where I laughed so hard that I choked. I've heard of some showings where people walk out during that scene (as if the other stuff is totally okay), but the crowds I saw the film with were screaming with laughter.

Pete said...

The Romanian villagers' story doesn't make any sense. They were supposedly told that it was a documentary, and yet they didn't find it strange that they were told where to stand, how to act with and react to a man they had never seen before, to make out with that man and hold up a trophy afterward, to wave at the man who was driving away in a shell of a car pulled by a *horse?* And the woman who played his wife didn't find it strange that in a documentary she was asked to run after a strange man threatening in Kazakh to break off his penis? And the one-handed man didn't find it strange that in a documentary he was asked to tape a rubber sex toy to his arm? Please.