Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan
Sacha Baron Cohen never disappoints us with the dark humor but brilliant messages. ‘Very Nicee’ , ‘Great Success’and ‘high five!’ have been added into my favorite vocabulary list. If you watch the film and get it, maybe these would be your favorites too.
For those who don’t know Borat, this is the most amazing comedy that not only has super funny jokes but also has hidden political and social messages.It is also the root behind many famous memes and catch-phrases on internet, like
Borat offers humor so dark that ‘The Interview’ becomes just child play. Judging from just that, people might view Borat as just a dumb movie full of inappropriate gestures, conversations, and jokes. However, if you give this film a chance and watch it without bias, you may realize that the messages behind those dumb, sexist and racist scenes actually portray interesting aspects of reality in our society.
King in the castle
The first time Borat checked into the first hotel in USA, he unpacked immediately in the elevator thinking that it’s his room and say to the bellboy that he refuse to go the smaller room. Moreover, as soon as he notices the chair in his hotel room, he ran to sit there very proudly. From this, we can understand that compare to his house from the start of the film which has only a small bed and a cow within the same area, that room is even bigger than his whole house and even have a chair…which might be something very rare judging from his expression.
My country send me to United States to make movie-film. Please, come and see my film. If it not success, I will be execute.
Sexist or Socially constructed belief?
Borat: [while driving] Look, there is a woman in a car! Can we follow her and maybe make a sexy time with her?
Driving Instructor: No, no, no, no, no, no!
Borat: A-why not?
Driving Instructor: Because a woman has the right to choose who she has sex with.
Borat: [stunned] WHAT…? You joke?
Almost every word coming out of this character is offensive in some way or another. But one particular scene in the film shows that maybe those sexist claims coming out of his mouth might not mean that he is an immoral guy.
He discusses with the Feminism group that “the government’s scientist has proven that women have brain the size of a squirrel’s.” After hearing this, I realize that sometimes it is unfair to judge people by their words and belief since their belief might be wrongfully constructed by others. Maybe there might be something wrong with the education system or family teaching.
Satire of our society:
Another interesting point is how the American community is portrayed in the film. Borat, the journalist from Kazakhstan, stated many times how he thinks of his own country as the greatest and most glorious nation in the world. The scene which Borat sang the adapted version of American National Anthem in the middle of the film depicts how the Americans are not so different from Borat himself.
May George Bush drink the blood of every man,
woman and child in Iraq!
When the Americans in the audience hear Borat’s speech, they cheer him on. As the words worse and more aggressive, they started to realize how wrong and inappropriate his words are. It actually goes from “American is the greatest country in the world”, to “May you destroy their country, so that for the next thousand years not even a single lizard can survive in their dessert.” The only hope for humanity left would be that the audience starts to get disgusted since each word that they cheer on about how great USA is, is actually full of racism and sexism.
“Borat: [singing the Kazakhi national anthem to the tune of the American national anthem]
Kazakhstan is the greatest country in the world
All other countries are run by little girls
Kazakhstan is number-one exporter of potassium
Other Central Asian countries have inferior potassium
Kazakhstan is the greatest country in the world
All other countries is the home of the gays...”
This film offers the reality of USA society in a very dark area. Dark in the sense that I almost lost hope for humanity. Because I know deep down inside that what Borat shows is not just the reality of USA society but the reality of the whole
If you pay attention to this film closely, you would understand that what the film want you to focus in is not Borat’s behavior but it’s everyone else in the film. It’s Americans’ reaction to his inappropriate actions. It’s how those people view themselves as superior group of people, more educated, and more civilized compared to him
Although, this is a movie with probably scripted scenes, I would like to believe in Sacha’s claim that the reactions in every scene is genuine and real. And that is the scariest part. The reaction of people in this movie looking at Borat as somehow lower human being is wrong. When that is how every one of is view others who we believed to be less educated or less civilized than us is something usual, it has proven that we are secretly worse than Borat.