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Ali G first appeared on our television sets as a small part of the 11 O'Clock Show. His rather ‘unique’ interviewing skills soon propelled Sacha Baron Cohen into the mainstream and it wasn’t long before he had a big hit on his hands. However, since then we’ve seen Ali G spin off after spin off and despite plenty of celebrity endorsement of his own TV show the whole Ali G franchise was beginning to get a little tired. It was therefore with some trepidation that I sat down to watch his latest venture: Ali G In Da House…

Ali G In Da House
If you’ve seen his show before, you’ll already know that this isn’t going to be Oscar winning material. However, check your brain in at the door and prepare yourself for this classic piece of storytelling. The film revolves around the closure of Ali’s local leisure centre which just happens to be the spiritual home of the West End Massive (Ali’s posse) When the opportunity arrives for Ali to become the MP of Staines it seems like the perfect opportunity for him to save the leisure centre, though, naturally it’s a little more complicated than that…

It turns out that dark forces within the government are infact using Ali to bring down the current prime minister - played by Michael Gambon. It is thought that by instating Ali in parliament, it will discredit the prime minister to such a degree that he’ll be forced to resign. You would imagine that Ali discrediting the PM would be a pretty safe bet, but things don’t go quite according to plan and what follows is a bizarre mix of dance, rap….and jokes revolving primarily around reproductive organs!

If you’re easily offended, Ali G In Da House will not be your cup of tea – at all. If you’ve been lucky enough to catch his TV show in the past you’ll know all about Ali’s brand of humour, and it’s certainly not for the faint of heart! Ali G In Da House takes that humour and elevates it to an all new level of bad taste. If you don’t want to see him on the receiving end of animal oral sex – don’t see Ali G, if you don’t want to see him being ‘beaten off’ by a blind man – don’t see Ali G. Infact, I myself should probably tell you not to watch this highly immature piece of filmmaking; only I can’t. Why? Because it just happens to be one of the funniest films this year!

Ali G In Da House
A film like this isn’t about fancy special effects or intricate plot twists, it’s about the characters. And what a bunch of deranged, self-obsessed characters they are! People say that comedies are the hardest things to do convincingly, and thankfully the actors don’t let the side down here. Sure, everything is over the top, the acting can be a bit wooden and some of the jokes aren’t delivered quite as well as they could have been…but this is Ali G, this isn’t award winning comedy. These small criticisms are more than made up for by the constant stream of jokes which are almost always tear jerkers! Ali is unsurprisingly the focal point of the movie, yet the person that steals the show would have to be Martin Freeman as Ali’s best mate, Ricky C. You’ll probably know him best from his role as Tim from The Office, but he delivers such a convincing portrayal of a white boy wannabe rapper that you’ll soon forget about his past work. The supporting cast is also solid with some big names in acting like Michael Gambon and Charles Dance as the Chancellor of the Exchequer.  

Ali G In Da House is presented in anamorphic widescreen with the aspect ratio of 1.85:1. Universal have provided a primarily flawless transfer here. Colours are rich and vibrant and there are no noticeable problems on first sight. However, if one was to be picky it does look a little bit grainy in places. For instance in certain parts of the film, stock footage is used which looks noticeably different from the rest of the print. Still, not a major criticism by any means and I’m sure 99% of you will be satisfied with what is on offer here.

Ali G In Da House
Included on the disc is a Dolby Digital 5.1 track and on the whole it’s pretty active. If you’ve seen the movie at the cinema then you’ll already know that it carries an impressive soundtrack. In particular, scattered around the movie are a number of hip-hop tracks that are sure to get your walls pumping (and the neighbours complaining!) Unfortunately though the track isn’t quite as vibrant and loud as you might expect. The surrounds for example aren’t used a great deal at all, the only major use of them is within the first few minutes with bullets flying all over the shop! Still, it gets the job done.

A pretty comprehensive selection of extras is provided here. Kick starting them all is a commentary track with Ali G and his ‘bitch’ Ricky C. This is an ‘in character’ commentary so if a fact filled track is what you’re after; this is only going to disappoint. The track is filled with criticisms about one another’s acting, various jabs at the cheap jokes and plenty of general character natter. Unfortunately I thought this track became rather tired, rather quickly. One of my main criticisms about Sacha Baron Cohen is that his characters are very scripted. As such he suffers quite badly when improvising…mainly because the stuff he comes out with isn’t particularly funny! I would have much preferred a commentary from Cohen and Freeman as themselves, but I’m sure die hard fans might get something out of this.

Next up are ‘Scenes Not In It, Innit’. Included here are a number of deleted scenes that were ‘too shitty to put in the finished film’. I’m inclined to agree as well, although a pretty weighty amount of scenes are included (around 17 minutes in total), they are all pretty humourless! I did find one scene in which Ali G had to ‘part the curtains’ of the Mayor’s wife rather amusing though I must confess! Following on directly from the 17 minutes of deleted scenes is another section entitled “Outtakes & Mistakes”. This lasts for around 4 minutes and features a variety of on-set cockups including Tupac the dog nibbling on a little more than he should!

Ali G In Da House
The next feature is entitled ‘Me Video Diary’. This is a short guided tour by Ali himself. You witness him talking to some real gangsters in LA, having his makeup done to make him look ‘less black’ and disposing of his bodily gas on an unfortunate crewmember. The highlight of the video though is Ali taking a trip to 10 Downing Street and trying to get in. Naturally he doesn’t get too far, but it’s quite fun to see him winding up the poor policeman at the gate! This runs to just under 12 minutes in total and is presented in widescreen.

Next is one my favourite features on the disc. It’s entitled ‘Talkin Da Talk’, and basically explains the meaning of some of Ali’s one-liners in the film. Each quote is translated into the Queens English so us posh folks can all understand! Short clips of the film are played before pausing for the translation which is done so by a very well spoken gentleman! Unfortunately only a small selection of quotes are translated which is disappointing, the entire piece runs to just over 2 minutes including the Ali G introduction at the start.

Also included on the disc is a photo gallery. I’ve never really seen much point in having photo galleries included on discs but at least this one is done reasonably well. The gallery features 12 reasonably large photos in total. Each one of these is played automatically to the sound of the Ali G chanting music.

Completing the package are 3 trailers. The first is the full-length theatrical trailer which runs to just over 2 minutes. The second two are the rather cleverly produced teaser trailers. The first of which is made to look like a trailer for the Michael Mann movie Ali, this runs to a little over 1 minute. The second teaser trailer is entitled Tupac and begins innocently enough but soon descends into an act that I’m sure the RSPCA would have something to say about! This trailer runs to a little under a minute. All of the above are presented in widescreen.

Ali G In Da House
Overall then, if you’re a fan of the Ali G television series this is going to be a logical purchase, infact, you’ve probably already got it! For those of you without prior knowledge of the character though should tread far more carefully! I actually put this on for my dad the other night and I don’t think he was too impressed; he was more worried about what would happen if mum found out I had it! Be warned!