A completely wrong film on all levels, hey, that’s an achievement.
Louis Leterrier is an experienced action director. There is no action in this film. None. Usually whenever I dive in on Sacha Baron Cohen’s maniacal film, I try and give him the credit at first. But now that he doesn’t have his home team in his pocket. I could see the effect that it casts him and us, investing in this film. The project is light, lazy and effortful. Light as in the jokes are staged- just as the loud and cheesy elements that might help the characters later- and can actually be seen far before it punches, by then it is not funny. It is disappointing. Lazy, as in you’d think that the humor that he has based his fame on would evolve in say.. I don’t know, a decade!
Effortful as in, at the end of the day, Sacha is a witty comedian and he understands that it is not working and hence all the sketchy sequences reeks of desperation. Desperation to pull off something inedible, offensive, out of the box and just straight out wrong. Another thing I cannot stop myself from noticing was the cast. Sacha has got a big cast. He is a big name. He has a responsibility under his name and peer pressure to respect his fame.
And no, it has not made him sober, he is still high on his dark humorous vocab that made him who he is. But there is something definitely missing, that I cannot put my finger on. He is unstable, surely and incredibly dutiful on passing a major theme. Speaking of which, usually the crass jokes are weighed in by a nuanced eye opening message. But in this espionage comic thriller, even that too is missing. The Brothers Grimsby looks like a tell tale of his, Sacha’s, own filmography, I’d rather go back to Borat who was so 2006.