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The gay and lesbian community is up in arms about Sacha Baron Cohen's latest flick - Bruno - that parodies flamboyantly gay culture. GLAAD decried its over-the-top portrayal saying it "decreases the public's comfort with gay people." They also said it "hit the gay community pretty hard and reinforce(s) some damaging, hurtful stereotypes."

Not that I disagree (I haven't and don't intend to see the movie) but its hard for me to generate much sympathy for them on this issue - largely because of the way that entertainment and media portray African America. Its hard for me to get worked up over a single movie versus just about everything that's come from the entire history of mass communications in this country about us. Whether its the artificially generated (violent, misogynistic, anti-social, criminal) rap music ginned up by record companies, or stereotypical film characters (check every popular movie portrayal of a black character in America), or even the media's lurid fascination with the black crime story line - we are almost always portrayed in an over-the-top manner, almost always in grossly stereotypical ways that have a negative impact not only on the majority population, but most important to our own community in how we think of ourselves.

My lack of sympathy may appear immature and insensitive. So be it. America is saturated in Bruno-like parodic portrayals about black people - constantly, consistently, for hundreds of years, exclusively. They are such an ingrained part of our broader culture that even black folks succumb to its influence when we see people from our community who are able to break out of those stereotypical molds. When a black child endeavors to do well in school s/he's "acting white". When others reach for their potential in other productive ways, they are frequently questioned if they are "black enough". Please. Are we really going lo let ourselves be defined by others' self-centered irrational stereotypes of us? Really?

I agree that Bruno glorifies gay stereotypes and can easily see how that might be offensive to the gay community. Again, comparing our ills versus those of other communities may be immature, but African America lives with so much of that stuff that new instances of it are not even noteworthy any more. Tyler Perry produces all sorts of stuff about dysfunctional, violent, criminal characters and we laugh and think its funny. Do I really want to see a middle aged black woman go to jail for example? I know I don't. (I also know that there lots of money to be made by black folks feeding white stereotypes though.)

Bruno will probably do well. America loves to revel in stereotypes - particularly of groups it is uncomfortable with. It feeds their paranoia and legitimizes their phobias. They show people who are different in ways that provide the majority with the ammunition they need to steadfastly cling to their prejudices. It feeds their fears and stokes their ignorance.

If nothing else, Bruno does a great job of highlighting this phenomena in a way that - if enough people connect the dots - sheds light on what the black community has experienced since 1619. If that happens, then perhaps it will provide a service after all.

© MBM

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"(check every popular movie portrayal of a black character in America), or even the media's lurid fascination with the black crime story line - we are almost always portrayed in an over-the-top manner, almost always in grossly stereotypical ways that have a negative impact not only on the majority population, but most important to our own community in how we think of ourselves."

I know this was a problem with us years ago, but lately just don't see it. I'm thinking of such movies such as:

*In pursuit of happiness
*Enemy of the State
*The taking of Penham 123
*Star Trek
*I am legend

I look at movies like these and I see nothing degrading, or "over the top" as you say; am I missing something?

Kevin
quote:
Originally posted by kevin1122:
"(check every popular movie portrayal of a black character in America), or even the media's lurid fascination with the black crime story line - we are almost always portrayed in an over-the-top manner, almost always in grossly stereotypical ways that have a negative impact not only on the majority population, but most important to our own community in how we think of ourselves."

I know this was a problem with us years ago, but lately just don't see it. I'm thinking of such movies such as:

*In pursuit of happiness
*Enemy of the State
*The taking of Penham 123
*Star Trek
*I am legend

I look at movies like these and I see nothing degrading, or "over the top" as you say; am I missing something?

Kevin


It's an issue of proportion. Should we try to create a list where stereotypes are still prevalent in movies to offset yours?
quote:
Originally posted by kevin1122:
MGM

quote:
"It's an issue of proportion. Should we try to create a list where stereotypes are still prevalent in movies to offset yours?"

Yes! I was unaware that Hollywood was still putting out "racist" movies; I must have missed them.
What are some of the recent movies that are racially offensive to Blacks?

K


Golly Gee! We all know phenomena can only exist if you are aware of them! Jeepers!


sleep sleep sleep @ the usual euroboy trap #2343.56 where a euro attempts to invalidate afro perspective AGAIN.
"decreases the public's comfort with gay people."


WhaaaaaaaaaaHA HAH AHA HA!!!!

As if the American public OUTSIDE of the GLAAD diaspora were EVER comfortable with alternative lifestyles.

The fuck outta here with that nonsense.

I saw Borat and Bruno. Both were retardedly funny but Borat was better. I'm waiting for the next Cohen movie to come out when people finally start telling him to fuck off. What planet do you have be from to not recognize this goofy, 6'3" jewish dude coming towards you to run a gag?

generally speaking, if you haven't heard of this guy by now you deserve to get punk'd by him.
I heard that it was getting harder for Sacha to pull off his gags. That's why he keeps making a B-line to bum fuck areas of the nation.

This time he was in Cullman, Alabama and Fort McClellan--two of the countriest ass towns in the state of Alabama.

When you really think about it, this guy is a genious. Do you know how DEEP in character you have to be in order to be right on que everytime? Think about it: Out of 100 gags maybe 40 of them pop off right and only 25 of those can be used to make scenes in a movie.

Nothing is rehearsed as far as the dimwits that fall for the gags, so he has to be spot on with his character as well as manipulate the moment to make it as real as well as flow with the storyline as possible.

I was shocked. The first movie was great--a one hit wonder kind of deal. I never thought he'd be able to pull off a second movie, particularly, after all the negative press he got from dealing with lawsuits to all the media hype he got from the first movie.

The only thing about Cohen's work is in my opinion I'd only want to go see his movie once. After you get the shock value from a particular situation its not worth seeing again. Nevertheless, it's funny just to see how ignorant and gullible people are in this day and age.

'Bruno's' Palestinian 'terrorist' plans to sue over film


By Dion Nissenbaum, McClatchy Newspapers Dion Nissenbaum, Mcclatchy Newspapers
Thu Jul 16, 6:08 pm ET

BEIT SAHOUR, West Bank — Ayman Abu Aita knew there was something odd about the Austrian television reporter who asked to be kidnapped last year, showed risque video clips of himself stripping and suggested that "King" Osama Bin Laden shave his beard so he wouldn't look like a "dirty wizard."

It wasn't until last week, however, that the middle-aged Palestinian store owner realized that he'd become an unwitting movie actor now known worldwide as "Bruno's terrorist."

In the past week, Abu Aita has been propelled to unsought global stardom as the perplexed "terrorist group leader" meeting the ditzy, gay Austrian fashion television-show host "Bruno" in British comedian Sacha Baron Cohen's new hit movie.

After realizing that he'd become one of the latest people to be duped by the actor, Abu Aita has hired a team of lawyers and is preparing to join the line of critics to sue Baron Cohen over his hit "mockumentaries."

"He's mean, he's ruthless and he's a liar," Abu Aita said during an interview this week in the cramped storeroom office of his small market near Bethlehem . "I told him that I was not a terrorist, that I am a political moderate and that I would not help him become famous by kidnapping him."

The threatened lawsuit is likely to be one of several to target Baron Cohen for "Bruno," the new film starring his ostentatious, on-screen alter ego.

Baron Cohen faced a swarm of complaints and a few lawsuits from unwitting stars of his first blockbuster "mockumentary" film, "Borat." One woman in California who took part in the filming of a "Bruno" scene at a bingo hall already is suing for "emotional distress."

Abu Aita could be the next.

Baron Cohen met Abu Aita last year when the comedian came to the Middle East to film part of "Bruno" in which the character seeks fame by trying, unsuccessfully, to broker peace between Israel and the Palestinians.

In promoting "Bruno," Baron Cohen has depicted his interview with Abu Aita as a dangerous mission that required special security to take him into the West Bank for a clandestine meeting at a secret location.

"It's not that easy to find an actual terrorist," Baron Cohen said last week while promoting the movie on the "Late Show with David Letterman ." "In fact, your government has been looking for one for about nine years."

To find his "terrorist" foil, Baron Cohen said, he had to seek out a CIA contact and spend months searching for someone who finally put him in touch with Abu Aita . Then, Baron Cohen said, he had trouble finding security wiling to take him to meet Abu Aita .

The reality was much more sedate, however.

Abu Aita is no terrorist on the run. He's a 39-year-old father of four and a local political leader with the pro- Western Fatah Party . His Christian family owns two markets that sell groceries and alcohol in Beit Sahour, a small West Bank town next to Bethlehem .

Tracking him down and setting up an interview required a few phone calls.

While Abu Aita did serve two years in prison in Israel for his role at a Fatah leader during the second Palestinian uprising, he dismissed Baron Cohen's depiction of him as a nefarious terrorist mastermind.

Although several Palestinian activists identified Abu Aita as a member of al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade , he said he'd never been part of the militant group that the United States and Israel classify as a terrorist organization.

Newspaper stories from 2002, however, identify him as a local al Aqsa leader at a time when the group was stepping up its suicide bombings of Israeli targets.

"Don't look at us as angels," Abu Aita told The Boston Globe in 2002 before he was imprisoned. "As long as there is occupation, there will be resistance."

These days, he works with the Holy Land Trust , a Bethlehem -based charity that promotes nonviolence.

He had no qualms when a friend asked him to sit down last year with a visiting journalist who he was told wanted to focus on the plight of the Palestinian people.

The location was hardly clandestine, and it wasn't especially risky.

Abu Aita met Baron Cohen in a private room above a restaurant in a part of the West Bank outside Bethlehem that's still under full Israeli military control.

"If I am a terrorist, how can I go to Israeli-controlled areas?" asked Abu Aita , who said he'd never signed any release or papers during the interview. "How can I be a roaming terrorist?"

Though Abu Aita was perplexed by Baron Cohen's sleeveless vest and revealing "Bruno" attire, he said they spoke for four hours about the political conflict and life in the West Bank .

At one point, in an apparent attempt to provoke Abu Aita , Baron Cohen showed him video clips of "Bruno" stripping.

When Baron Cohen said he wanted to be kidnapped so he could become famous, Abu Aita said he told him firmly, in English: "I reject this," a response that was edited out of the film. Instead, the movie shows Abu Aita reacting to the clips of "Bruno" stripping by saying, "I don't like."

In the movie, the interview comes to an abrupt end when Baron Cohen offers Abu Aita unsolicited advice to "lose the beards" because "your king Osama looks like a kind of dirty wizard or a homeless Santa."

The perplexed Abu Aita asks the translator to repeat Baron Cohen's advice, after which the off-screen translator says: "Get out. Get out now."

That angry response never took place, however, and the translator's words were added in the editing room, Abu Aita said.

Abu Aita's sudden celebrity has become the talk of the town, from Bethlehem to Flint, Mich. , where relatives were the first to see the "Bruno" clip.

"My family in the States called me and said, 'Your picture is in a movie and underneath it is says, "terrorist,'' ' " Abu Aita said while smoking cigarettes in front of a wall of shelves filled with overstocked vodka, scotch and other alcoholic beverages.

To clear his reputation, Abu Aita called on Baron Cohen to release the full video of the interview.

"It's a perverted movie," said Abu Aita's brother, Amjad. "We're a conservative society, and people don't like it. For Ayman to be associated with this movie like this, it has a negative impact on his standing in society."

Officials at Universal Pictures , the film's distributor, had no comment Thursday on Abu Aita's criticism.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/mcclat...wl_mcclatchy/3273638
quote:
He had no qualms when a friend asked him to sit down last year with a visiting journalist who he was told wanted to focus on the plight of the Palestinian people.



I find it pretty ruthless and cruel that Sasha Cohen would make this man think he is interested in the plight of the palestinian people only to make an a## out of him.

that ain't cool at all...

I hope the dude gets some of sasha's millions.
I thought it was funny, i saw it twice, it was utterly ridiculous, stupid, juvenile and had an incredibly weak plot but funny as hell..a guilty pleasure of sorts I suppose I don’t know. I was not offended in the least. The stereotypical gay and other scenes were done in a way to be totally outrageous and over the top, IMO to show you how ridiculous upholding those stereotypes are in the first place. Don't get me started on Tyler Perry *Rolling eyes* and his mess!.....I posted this over on the other site

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