Lewd and Goofy
Release Date: May 16, 2012
Starring: Sacha Baron Cohen, Anna Faris,
Ben Kingsley, Jason
Mantzoukas, John C. Riley,
Fred Armisen, Bobby Lee
Runtime: 83 minutes
Distributor: Paramount Pictures/Viacom
Director: Larry Charles
Executive Producer: Peter Baynham, Mari Jo
Winkler-Idffreda, Dan Mazer
Producer: Sacha Baron Cohen, Alec Berg,
David Mandel, Jeff Schaffer,
Anthony Hines, Scott Rudin
Writer: Sacha Baron Cohem, Alec Berg,
David Mandel, Jeff Schaffer
Address Comments To:Sumner Redstone, Chairman, and Philippe Dauman, CEO of Viacom
Brad Grey, Chairman/CEO
Adam Goodman, President, Paramount Film Group
5555 Melrose Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90038-3197
Phone: (323) 956-5000
The movie stars Sacha Baron Cohen as Admiral General Aladeen, a dictator from a fictional country called the Republic of Wadiya. Aladeen sentences anyone to death for minor offenses, including disagreeing with him about minor points in policy such as whether a nuclear missile should have a pointy or round top. He has also ordered his countrymen to substitute his name, Aladeen, for a bunch of other words. Thus, for example, a store’s sign of “We’re Open” versus “We’re Closed” becomes “We’re Aladeen” in both cases.
Aladeen refuses to let inspectors into the new nuclear facility he’s building. He lies and tells the world community that he’s just building it for nuclear energy. World leaders challenge Aladeen to come to the United Nations in New York to show the world evidence that he is indeed building a peaceful facility. Aladeen accepts the challenge. However, when he gets there, his uncle and trusted aide, Tamir, has him kidnapped. The kidnapper plans to torture him, then kill jim, but firsat he cuts off his beard. However, Aladeen escapes, accidentally starts a fire, and the kidnapper’s body is burned in the fire. So, Aladeen finds himself without his trademark beard while wandering the streets of New York. None of the security people at the hotel believes him when he tries to return to his rooms.
Not knowing Aladeen is still alive, the uncle wants the look-alike to sign a new democratic constitution in public. In reality, the constitution is designed to turn all oil rights in Wadiya over to China, British Petroleum, and Exxon.
Meanwhile, Aladeen starts working for Zoey, a female health food hippie caterer who has access to Aladeen’s hotel where the uncle has planned the signing ceremony. Aladeen’s plans to get back into power hit a snag when he starts falling in love with Zoey, a radical feminist hippie who .
THE DICTATOR has some funny jokes about Muslim fanatics and Arab dictators. Hippie leftist culture also takes some pointed comical jabs. However, there’s more than a few scenes with very crude sexual humor, plus an extremely explicit nude shot. The movie also contains some very strong foul language. Politically, despite the satire of Muslims and Middle eastern dictators, the movie takes potshots at oil companies. Also, the goofy kidnapper (played by John C. Riley) is depicted as the stereotypical Southern bigot.
In addition, a scene during the climactic third act adopts the politically correct, socialist position of the “Occupy Wall Street” movement. It suggests that the United States is a capitalist dictatorship run by a capitalist cabal of dictators in Washington in league with “Big Business.” The dialogue in the scene is clever, but it clearly shows Sacha Baron Cohen’s left-wing perspective on American politics. He does, however, poke fun at the Chinese ambassador, although some of the jokes may seem racist to some people. Finally, although Aladeen’s love for Zoey seems to change his character for the good, a couple scenes at the very end suggest he hasn’t really changed.
The extreme sexual humor and nudity in THE DICTATOR is not as constant as it was in Cohen’s last movie, the abhorrent BRÜNO, but it’s still unacceptable nonetheless. Also, the goofy comedy is rather hit and miss. So, it’s doubtful whether THE DICTATOR will attract a vast audience of moviegoers. It could still attract a following, however, so MOVIEGUIDE® dissuades moviegoers against seeing this disappointing DICTATOR.
THE DICTATOR has some funny jokes about Muslim fanatics and Arab dictators. However, it has plenty of very crude sexual humor. There’s also some very strong obscene language, plus two comical shots of extreme nudity. Also, there’s brief politically correct comedy that’s Anti-American. The extremely lewd humor and brief nudity in THE DICTATOR is not as constant as Cohen’s last movie. It’s still unacceptable, however. Also, the laughs are rather hit and miss. So, moviegoers won’t really miss much if they skip THE DICTATOR.