• Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan (2006) (SBS Movies)Source: SBS Movies
SBS 2 pays tribute to filmmakers shining a spotlight on the bulging underbelly of society, with these hilarious comedies from around the world. Mondays in May.
SBS Movies, Presented by
Marc Fennell

21 Apr 2016 - 5:38 PM  UPDATED 26 May 2016 - 11:10 AM

Monday 2 May


9:30pm, SBS 2

USA, 2006
Director: Larry Charles
Starring: Sacha Baron Cohen, Ken Davitian, Luenell, Pamela Anderson
What's it about?
In the cult comedy Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan, Kazakh journalist 'Borat Sagdiyev' travels to America to make a documentary about American cultural mores (and pursue the woman of his dreams, Pamela Anderson). Travelling across the nation, the vulgar, racist and sexist character meets and offends unsuspecting yanks. All together now: "My wiife!"

The Clown (Klown)

11:05pm, SBS 2

Denmark, 2010
Director: Mikkel Nørgaard
Starring: Frank Hvam, Casper Christensen, Marcuz Jess Petersen
What's it about?
In this hilarious parenthood caper, based on a hugely popular Danish sitcom, socially inept Frank is determined to prove his virility to his pregnant girlfriend. An ill-advised plan sees him 'kidnap' her 12-year-old nephew and take him along to his best friend Casper’s debauched weekend canoe trip. Together they rampage through brothels, hospitals and armed robberies, and they forge a friendship that might prove Frank is more capable than he ever thought. Gross, rude... and extremely funny.

Read ★★★ ½ review


Monday 9 May

Four Lions

9:25pm, SBS 2

UK, 2010
Director: Christopher Morris
Starring: Will Adamsdale, Riz Ahmed, Adeel Akhtar
What's it about?
This dark and funny satire of the modern face of terrorism follows four young British Muslims let by Omar (Riz Ahmed, recently seen in Nightcrawler), who, disillusioned about the treatment of Muslims in the world, aspire to become jihadists, but end up proving to be more of a danger to themselves. Despite dealing with a confronting subject matter, Four Lions is a comic tour de force, which shows that - while terrorism is about ideology - it can also be about idiots. Winner of a BAFTA and nominated for two British Comedy Awards.

Four Lions: Kayvan Novak interview
Blog: Four Lions: most definitely an alternate view
Read ★★★★ review

Big Bad Wolves

11:20pm, SBS 2
Watch now at SBS On Demand

Israel, 2013
Director: Navot Papushado, Aharon Keshales
Starring: Lior Ashkenazi, Rotem Keinan, Tzahi Grad
What's it about?
This thriller hailing from Israel was Quentin Tarantino's favourit film of 2013. The admiration must have been mutual, as its torture scenes recall some of the most disturbing moments of Reservoir Dogs. The film starts with a series of brutal murders, which puts the lives of three men on a collision course: The father of the latest victim now out for revenge; a vigilante police detective operating outside the boundaries of law; and the main suspect in the killings - a religious studies teacher arrested and released due to a police blunder. 


Monday 16 May

Young Adult

9:25pm, SBS 2

USA, 2012
Director: Jason Reitman
Starring: Charlize Theron, Patton Oswalt, Patrick Wilson
What's it about?
This dark comedy written by Juno's Diablo Cody stars Charlize Theron in a far-from-glamourous role as the self-centered and cynical Mavis Gary, a teen literature writer. Mavis returns to her home town with a dual mission: to relive her glory days and make off with her now-married high-school sweetheart. However, her mission does not go exactly to plan, and she finds her homecoming more problematic than she expected. Instead, Mavis forms an unusual bond with a former, disabled classmate (played by comedian Patton Oswalt, in a touching performance), who has also found it difficult to move past high school.

Read ★★★ review

Hollywood Shuffle

11:10pm, SBS 2

USA, 1987
Director: Robert Townsend
Starring: Robert Townsend, Craigus R. Johnson, Helen Martin
What's it about?
This hilarious satire of the film industry follows Bobby Taylor in his attempts to become a successful actor, and the many obstacles he encounters through a series of skits (for instance, a "Black acting school" where white actors teach students the art of Jive Talk, or a Siskel & Ebert spoof: "Sneakin' in the Movies"). Produced, directed, and co-written by Robert Townsend, the film reflects Townsend's real-life experiences, when the only roles available to Black actors were for thugs, or when he was regularly told he was too black or not black enough for certain roles.

Watch The Movie Show original ★★★★ review


Monday 23 May

The Guard

9:25pm, SBS 2
Watch now at SBS On Demand

Ireland, 2011
Director: John Michael McDonagh
Starring: Brendan Gleeson, Don Cheadle, Mark Strong
What's it about?
A riotous buddy comedy that could only be made in Ireland, which rightly netted Brendan Gleeson an Oscar nomination for his superb performance as small-town Irish cop Gerry Boyle. When three drug-dealers are planning to land half a billion dollars’ worth of cocaine off the west coast of Ireland, the feisty, hard-living and foul-mouthed Galway Guard Gerry Boyle is forced to deal with the arrival of straight-laced FBI agent Wendell Everett (Don Cheadle) to his door and feign interest in the case.

The Guard: John Michael McDonagh interview
The Guard: Crime comedy, Irish style
Read ★★★★ review
10 of the Best: David Stratton

In the Loop

11:15pm, SBS 2
Watch now at SBS On Demand

UK, 2010
Director: Armando Iannucci
Starring: Peter Capaldi, James Gandolfini, Tom Hollander
What's it about?
This spin-off from the BBC political comedy The Thick of It, was directed by Armando Iannucci, who went on to work on the acclaimed US show Veep. It stars Peter Capaldi as the PM's Director of Communications, who desperately tries to fix the disaster provoked by a series of ill-advised comments by a hapless junior minister regarding the likelihood of an English-American alliance going to war in the Middle East. This political farce, replete with delectable colourful expletives, was nominated for an Oscar in 2010 for Best Adapted Screenplay.

Read ★★★★ review


Monday 30 May

Lars and the Real Girl

9:55pm, SBS 2

USA, 2007
Director: Craig Gillespie
Starring: Ryan Gosling, Emily Mortimer, Paul Schneider
What's it about?
Ryan Gosling veers from his heartthrob and tough man roles in this critically-acclaimed comedy with the character of Lars Lindstrom, an awkward and shy young man in a small northern town, whose dream of finding love comes true when he finally brings home his girlfriend Bianca to his brother and sister-in-law's home. The only problem is that Bianca's not real – she's a sex doll Lars ordered off the Internet. This delightful film benefits from a clever script by Six Feet Under writer Nancy Oliver, and a magnificent, sensitive performance by Rosling, who never mocks his character.

Watch The Movie Show original ★★★★ review
Watch interview with director Craig Gillespie

Happy Happy

11:50pm, SBS 2
Watch now at SBS On Demand

Norway, 2011
Director: Anne Sewitsky
Starring: Agnes Kittelsen, Henrik Rafaelsen, Joachim Rafaelsen
What's it about?
This bawdy Norwegian dramedy explores the malleability and resilience of adult relationships with the struggles experienced by two forty-something couples. Living in a remote, snowbound part of Norway, housewife Kaja maintains unyielding optimism in spite of her desperate loneliness and a husband who refuses to have sex with her. When new neighbours arrive, she is drawn to their sophistication and her enthusiasm to spend time with them spills into an elicit affair with the husband. Achingly awkward, surprisingly moving and very funny.

Read ★★★★ ½ review



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