Space Ramblings

Sacha Baron Cohen Go Home

As May crawls to June, The Avengers conclusively dominates the box office crushing everything else. Battleship got around it with a contingency plan by opening in Europe first. It should probably have opened everywhere first. The movie won’t have a completely disastrous image like John Carter, but it isn’t going to be another Transformers either.

The stupidest move was tossing The Dictator into the Avengers shredder. Sure a chunk of its target audience probably saw Avengers already, but the overlap was too big. Dark Shadows and What To Expect were at least targeting a female audience which was less likely to get distracted by exploding CG action movies. The Dictator had to be counting on getting some chunk of the female audience. Had to be.

The results at the box office don’t look that bad at first until you notice that The Dictator had a much bigger budget and can you imagine the marketing budget on all that? The Dictator marketing looked guerrilla, but you can bet all of it was expensive. Actual cost may top 100 million. And the movie won’t be making that back.

More devastating is that The Dictator is waking people up to the not so secret fact that Sacha Baron Cohen sucks. He’s okay enough playing a wacky character in a movie, but he’s not a star, his one trick comedy routine is to create an offensive character and then offend people and film the results. The Dictator can’t do that so it fails.

Borat and Bruno were Jackass with fewer stunts. Bruno was already flailing. The Dictator’s failure is going to mean much less backing for another project. If Borat 2 underwhelms, it’s game over.

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