It’s Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan. The sequel. Kind of. A Kazakh director is taking matters — or at least cameras — into his own hands by making his own follow up to Sacha Baron Cohen’s 2006 movie in a bid to improve his country’s image.
Erkin Rakishev was not, it’s fair to surmise, a fan of the original in which the British comedian’s character of Borat ran amok in America (and stalked the hell out of Pamela Anderson). So he’s done the reasonable thing of making My Brother, Borat in an attempt to show the wider world that we didn’t associate Borat with, you know, every single person from Kazakhstan.
“Every Kazakhstani who goes to the West feels uncomfortable to say where he or she is from,” Rakishev told BBC World Service. The plot centers on an American journalist called John, who watches Borat and promptly goes to Kazakhstan, in search of the character’s fictional home in Kusek. Guess what? He finds — spoiler alert! — a thoroughly modern and developed city instead.
Rakishev is seriously miffed with what the original achieved. “I think it crossed the line. Maybe they just wanted to joke, but they belittled, insulted and mixed us with dirt, they compared us to animals, showed us as barbarians and wild people.”
Nothing so crass crops up in My Brother, Borat. Well, unless you’re somehow offended by one of the main characters getting raped by a donkey or an elderly lady beating two people with a stick. “In contrast to the original film we are not going to such a low level of toilet humor,” promises Rakishev, who might just have underestimated his audience. NewsFeed, as always, will keep a keen eye out for Oscar’s Best Foreign Film nominations and cry conspiracy if My Brother, Borat isn’t recognized.