"Exposing African Corruption"
THE AMBASSADOR is a unique documentary that flips Sacha Baron Cohen’s comedic style inside out. A Danish TV reporter pretends to be an ambassador to a corrupt central African nation in order to expose the ruthless corruption in and exploitation of developing nations. THE AMBASSADOR has a strongly held, anti-dictatorial and anti-Communist worldview and is compelling viewing for older teenagers and adults.
Daring Danish TV reporter Mads Brugger sets out to show just how strongly corruption is destroying the way of life of impoverished, and often hopelessly naïve, people in Africa. He pays $130,000 to an illegal documents broker for false papers that can make him appear to be the Liberian ambassador to the Central African Republic (CAR). Along the way, he travels to the CAR and tries to make numerous deals to gain access to and control the country’s invaluable diamond supply. Multiple hidden cameras show the many unscrupulous deals and utterly ridiculous lengths to which corrupt people will go to gain power.
Brugger is guilty of one thing along the way, however. He misleads the innocent people of a town into thinking he will open a matchbox factory for them to work. Despite this, his ruse is a necessary front for him to accomplish any of the rest of his work. In fact, he rationalizes the ruse by saying in the narration that people expect to be lied to now in the CAR. As Brugger is forced to keep raising the financial stakes and engage in dangerous travels to ludicrously convoluted business meetings, he faces down danger with a humorous approach. He also provides an amazing lesson into the many societal wrongs occurring in developing countries like those of Africa, with the hope that people will learn to demand to change things for the better.
Brugger showed a positive worldview in his prior, debut documentary THE RED CHAPEL. In that movie, he infiltrated North Korea with hidden cameras while engaged in even more dangerous and more humorous undercover work. Brugger is absolutely opposed to dictatorships, particularly Communist ones. His take on the events in THE AMBASSADOR seem to be both trustworthy and entertaining. His movie provides real lessons about the real Africa. All these factors make THE AMBASSADOR highly commendable filmmaking for older teenagers and adults.
(BB, ACAC, L, A, MMM) Strong moral, anti-statist worldview in a comical vein that exposes the ruthless corruption in and exploitation of developing nations and their people in Central Africa; three obscenities (including one “f” word); no violence; no sex; no nudity; casual alcohol drinking is seen throughout the film in social situations, meetings and bars; no smoking or drugs; and, constant lying, bribery, broken promises, betrayals, and smuggling, but rebuked in a comic way.
THE AMBASSADOR is a unique documentary. Daring Danish TV reporter Mads Brugger shows how corruption is destroying impoverished, often hopelessly naïve, Africans. He pays $130,000 to an illegal documents broker for false papers that can make him appear to be the Liberian ambassador to the Central African Republic. Along the way, he travels to the republic, where he tries to make numerous deals to control the country’s invaluable diamond supply. Multiple hidden cameras show the many unscrupulous deals and ridiculous lengths to which corrupt people will go to gain power.
THE AMBASSADOR provides an amazing, important lesson in the many social ills occurring in developing countries like those of Africa. The TV reporter faces down danger with a humorous approach. The goal is to bring attention to the problems of corruption so that people will demand positive changes. All these factors make THE AMBASSADOR highly commendable filmmaking for older teenagers and adults. The reporter in THE AMBASSADOR is clearly opposed to dictatorships, particularly communist ones. Brief foul language warrants caution for older children.