Reviewer's Rating 3 out of 5   User Rating 4 out of 5
Ali G Indahouse (2002)

The public's insatiable appetite for Sacha Baron Cohen's Ali G character - a white gangsta rapper wannabe hailing from leafy English suburbia - made his eventual transition to the big screen a racing certainty.

"Kevin & Perry Go Large" proved two years ago that what works on the small screen doesn't always transfer to the less-forgiving medium of film. The good news for fans of Cohen's ribald creation, though, is that "Ali G Indahouse" delivers more than its fair share of saucy hilarity. Some viewers, however, might feel discomfited by the way his sexist, homophobic buffoon has started to embody the very attitudes Cohen originally set out to parody.

After a hilarious opening sequence shot on the mean streets of East LA, debutant director Mark Mylod sketches Ali's existence as self-styled leader of the 'West Staines Massive': hanging out with best mate Ricky C (Freeman), his affection for "Me Julie" (Bright), and teaching kids the rudiments of surviving ghetto life.

But the closure of his local leisure centre (the John Nike Leisure Centre, no less) inspires our sartorially-challenged hero to enter politics, where he soon becomes embroiled in a battle of wits between the Prime Minister (Gambon) and his devious Chancellor (Dance). Our hero soon discovers that the corridors of power are even more dangerous than the mean streets of Langley Village and Iver Heath.

The relentlessly scatological set-pieces - which range from sex with animals to Queen Elizabeth's pudenda - would make a horny schoolboy blush, and make the BBFC's 15 certificate hard to fathom. But there's nothing malicious in the juvenile humour, and the array of celebrity cameos (Naomi Campbell, John Humphries, Richard and Judy) shows that everyone's in on the joke.

Those in favour of "Ali G Indahouse" say aye. Aiiii.

End Credits

Director: Mark Mylod

Writer: Sacha Baron Cohen, Dan Mazer

Stars: Sacha Baron Cohen, Michael Gambon, Charles Dance, Kellie Bright, Martin Freeman, Rhona Mitra, Ray Panthaki

Genre: Comedy

Length: 88 minutes

Cinema: 22 March 2002

Country: UK

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