Jason Mantzoukas

Sacha Baron Cohen is a bit of an odd duck. An understatement, true, but he’s an outlier as a lead in studio comedies because thus far, instead of receiving a script and playing a character, he’s been making features based on characters created for his short lived HBO show. From the appropriately titled Da Ali G Show, Baron Cohen’s alter egos Borat and Bruno sprang forth assaulting the minds, eyes and morals of moviegoers the world over in what were essentially feature-length sketch shows more so than films (though Borat does get extra credit for the Pam Anderson narrative thread). Cohen’s new studio comedy, The Dictator, represents a departure from his norm and thus a challenge. Despite his involvement in the writing process, this wasn’t a persona he was used to slipping in and out of for years. Moreover, this would supposedly be a film with a narrative, filled with Cohen’s trademark humor for sure, but an actual story with a beginning, middle and end. All that remained to be seen was whether or not Cohen could pull that off.

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published: 12.23.2014
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published: 12.22.2014
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published: 12.19.2014
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