John Tierney makes a good point about the Borat movie in his column today. It is true that a lot of the people he targets make complete fools out of themselves (for example the church goers or the Rodeo guy) a lot were extremely hospitable towards an insanely annoying guy:
“Borat” is more like the class bully picking on the nerds. The hip urbanite ventures into flyover country disguised as a Kazakh yokel to see how the American yokels respond. Are the rednecks just as barbaric?
Considering everything Cohen does to them — running naked through a hotel, smashing merchandise in a store, calling a man’s wife ugly, presenting a bag of feces at a dinner party — the biggest shock is how politely they respond. Borat manages to goad several people into endorsing his appalling views, but most of the Americans come off as decent souls just trying to be nice to a weird foreigner.