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'The Dictator': Review Round Up

The Dictator, starring Sacha Baron Cohen, hit theaters today and the reviews have begun to roll out.

Baron Cohen plays Admiral General Aladeen, the tyrannical dictator of the Wadiya, a fake oil-rich North African nation that is on the path of building a nuclear weapon.  Aladeen, who is so infatuated with Western culture, pays enormous sums of money to fly American celebrities into Wadiya to have sex with him. He later receives a call from the U.N. to come to the United States to talk about his nuclear ambitions.

Directed by Larry Charles, Dictator seems to have managed to still impress critics despite ditching the ambush-interview mockumentary style of Borat and Bruno. Reviewers believed Admiral General Aladeen brought the same crass, outrageous and hysterical satire that the other Baron Cohen characters did before him.

So if you would like to know if all the hoopla Baron Cohen stirred up with his several appearances as the totalitarian ruler Admiral Aladeen was for a ticket price worthy cause, find out what the critics had to say below:
Kevin Jagernauth, The Playlist:
“At a first glance, Sacha Baron Cohen’s “The Dictator” almost seems too easy. Another accent, another elaborate costume, more manscaping and this time with the softball target of despotic leaders — it almost seemed as if the comic actor was pouring an ocean of fish into a tiny thimble and then pointing a comedy bazooka at it. And for the first fifteen to twenty minutes, The Dictator is kind of that obvious, and as a result, a bit uneven. But once the movie really finds its groove, Cohen’s latest character creation easily stands up with his best work. Frequently laugh out loud funny, button pushing, and the rare comedy that actually gets more enjoyable as it goes on, The Dictator delivers the goods. All hail Admiral General Aladeen!”

Eric Kohn, IndieWire
“Even when sticking to a script, Sacha Baron Cohen leaves no target untouched.  His new movie opens with a dedication to the memory of Kim Jong II and closes with an anti-Semitic gag. If Groucho Marx were alive today, he would probably make movies like The Dictator, British comedian Baron Cohen’s latest subversive romp and searing showcase of crass global stereotypes. Transitioning back into a scripted dynamic after his quasi-documentary performance excursions with Bruno and Borat, Baron Cohen loses none of his edge, combining slapstick inspiration and social commentary into a hilariously provocative blend.”

Drew McWeeney, HitFix
“Cohen and his co-star Jason Mantzoukas have a very strong and funny chemistry, and they play a lot of the film’s best scenes together. Anna Faris brings that same level of commitment that she always brings, and she earns some big laughs in the film. As with any rapid-fire comedy, supporting players get a chance to show up, score a few laughs, and then they’re gone, and there’s one sequence involving Kathryn Hahn that is so deranged both in conception and execution that I’m frankly amazed the film got its R rating without more edits.”

TRobbie Collin, The Telegraph
The Dictator is a comedian’s film, and almost every line in the script is either a punchline or a set-up. Not all of them are particularly amusing, but most are invigoratingly offensive in one way or another, and there are a handful of moments that deserve to endure.”

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