Blu-ray Review “The Dictator: Banned & Unrated”

Director: Larry Charles
Starring: Sacha Baron Cohen, Anna Faris, Ben Kingsley, Chris Parnell, Jessica St. Clair, Jason Mantzoukas
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Distributed by: Paramount
Release Date: August 21, 2012
Running Time: 83 minutes

Film: 3 out of 5 stars
Extras: 2 out of 5 stars

I feel very honored to review this Blu-ray release and would like to thank the Wadiyan treasury and the Admiral General for their kind donation.  Media Mikes though cannot be bribed ;-). Paramount delivered this Blu-ray to review with a personalized letter from Admiral General Wadiyan and a butt load of Wadiyan dollars.  Unfortunately it doesn’t help me to see the film in any better of light.  The film itself just doesn’t work for me.   It is very funny in parts but then very bland and boring is the rest of the film.  I can’t say that I hated the film because I did laugh quite a bit but overall I was left with calling the film forgettable.   I don’t really see myself bragging about it and will probably never watch again.  I call it a “one-timer”.  The unrated cut of the film just adds more of the vulgarity and boobs, which I actually thought the theatrical cut was lacking. Nonetheless, the cut ends up feeling even more drawn out…and don’t forget this film runs less than 90 minutes already.

The film follows Admiral General Aladeen, who while planning to address the United Nations in New York, to ensure that democracy would never come to the country. He ends up becoming a target for assassination. Even though he survives he is left shaven of his signature beard and wandering the streets of the Big Apple, unrecognized. While Aladeen, most trusted friend, Tahir (Kingsley) brings in a dimwit body double in his place in order to pull the strings and take power. It is up to Aladeen to adapt to everyday life in New York, where he meets and befriends a left-wing activist Zoey (Anna Faris). He plans a way to get his life back and ensure that democracy does not fall into his country or is it learning that his past ways are not what he really is looking for?

Let’s get to the Blu-ray presentation now.  The 1080p comes with an aspect ratio of 2.40:1, which looks good but isn’t going to break any real Blu-ray standards.  Same can be said for the DTS-HD MA 5.1 track.  Don’t get me wrong this film looks and sounds good but for a comedy it doesn’t stand out.  The Blu-ray release comes as a combo pack.  Besides the Blu-ray the film also comes with a DVD disc and a digital copy included.  The special features include basically just two features. There are over 30 minutes of deleted and extended scenes including, some funny and some completely missable.  There is a funny but short music video for “Your Money is on the Dresser” featuring Aladeen. Lastly there is an extended Larry King Interview as seen briefly in the movie.

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One Reply to “Blu-ray Review “The Dictator: Banned & Unrated””

  1. Great review about The Dictator; I’m impressed that you got a few Wadiyan dollars as part of your media kit. I’ve been a Sasha Coen fan since Da Ali G Show and I’ve been waiting for this to come out on video all summer.

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