BORAT SUBSEQUENT MOVIEFILM
BEST ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE
BEST WRITING (ADAPTED SCREENPLAY)
A satire on Trump’s America that follows a Kazakh journalist who is sent to America to deliver a gift to Vice President Mike Pence. His worldview is turned upside down when he learns to love and respect his daughter.
Treated like an animal in her country of Kazakhstan, Tutar Sagdiyev follows her father, Borat, to America, where he grooms her to be a gift to Vice President Pence. With a candid camera, the pair travel the country, shining a light on the underbelly of Trump’s America.
When I first saw “Borat Subsequent Moviefilm,” I thought for sure that the Academy would overlook it. There was nothing majorly wrong with it, but comedies usually do not make it to the Oscars. When Maria Bakalova started winning awards for her supporting role in the film, I brushed it off as a disconnect between the critics’ awards and the Academy Awards. Little did I know that I was completely wrong, as we stand here with Maria Bakalova as one of our nominees in the Best Actress in a Supporting Role category.
Not only did Sacha Baron Cohen pluck her from obscurity and put her in his film, but she nails her performance just as well as Cohen does. Tasked with matching his comedic wit and ability to goad ordinary people into unfavorable positions, the section of the film that grabbed everyone’s attention was her candid camera interview with Rudy Giuliani. Throughout the interview, he inappropriately touches Maria, and after, allegedly touches himself on a bed. The braveness to stay in character while being used as bait for a pervert is beyond commendable.
The pundits believe that Yuh-Jung Youn (“Minari”) is the safe bet to win, with Glenn Close (“Hillbilly Elegy”) being a close second. I would argue that Maria Bakalova might stand the better chance over Close. If the Academy decides Close is due for a win, then I will be wrong. But the attention Maria Bakalova garnered for this role should not go unnoticed. She received nominations from Screen Actors Guild, Golden Globes, Critics Choice, and BAFTA. All her fellow nominees only received one or two of those. There’s something to be said about that, and we may be in for a surprise come Oscar night.
|— 1st time Nominee —|
Screenplay by Sacha Baron Cohen & Anthony Hines & Dan Swimer & Peter Baynham & Erica Rivinoja & Dan Mazer & Jena Friedman & Lee Kern
Story by Sacha Baron Cohen & Anthony Hines & Dan Swimer & Nina Pedrad
With the original “Borat” nominated for Best Adapted Screenplay, we should have seen a nomination coming for the sequel. Sacha Baron Cohen leads the charge with eight other writers credited behind him. The Academy typically strays away from comedies in most categories, so the fact that it’s here is something of note.
The writing for this sequel is similar to the original. Borat is back in America, this time talking to real people about abortions, conspiracies, and COVID-19. Whether some of these characters are real or written is probably a testament to the writers, who do a great job blending fiction with reality. The “Wuhan Flu” song performed in front of a real-life cheering crowd was attention-grabbing. The mock interview with Rudy Giuliani was the icing on the cake.
Having garnered love from the Academy that I had not expected, “Borat Subsequent Moviefilm” not getting a Best Picture nomination surprises me. My gut tells me that it will overcome some of the other nominees in the category with the support it does have. Add to that, it won the Writers Guild award for Best Adapted Screenplay, and you’ve got to see this film as a strong contender. That said, there’s likely no beating Chloé Zhao and “Nomadland,” the favorite for not only Best Directing but Best Picture.
Sacha Baron Cohen | Anthony Hines | Peter Baynham | Dan Mazer
|2006 (79th)||Best Adapted Screenplay||“Borat Cultural Learnings of America for Make|
Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan”
Dan Swimer | Erica Rivinoja | Jena Friedman | Lee Kern | Nina Pedrad
|— 1st time Nominees —|
October 23, 2020
Sacha Baron Cohen
Nina Pedrad (story by)
by Sacha Baron Cohen
(for pervasive strong crude and sexual content, graphic nudity, and language)
Erran Baron Cohen
Sacha Baron Cohen
93RD ACADEMY AWARDS | OSCARS CHALLENGE
MARCH 29, 2021