Director: Larry Charles

As any comedian will tell you, it’s hard to tell the same joke twice. That’s the situation with Brüno, in which the abundantly gifted and remarkably brave (or crazy) Sacha Baron Cohen once again attempts mass deception for comic purposes. His title character in Borat came across as a harmless doofus confronting a foreign land and culture, and benefited mightily from Cohen’s lack of renown. Most people didn’t know they were being played for laughs.

He’s neither harmless nor anonymous this time out. Cohen’s Brüno, an Austrian fashionista with minor talent and major attitude, has just one big dumb prank to play about being gay, and he does so to the point of numbness. Gays and straights can feel equally offended, but also equally bored.

Cohen needs to move on to another brand of comedy that better serves him.

The numerous DVD extras include commentary by Cohen and director Larry Charles in which they reveal who was in on the joke — including Harrison Ford, who appeared to be one of the few spontaneously hilarious reactions to Brüno’s antics.