The Safran Company, Unrated
Not much else has worked too well during the last few centuries, when it comes to who gets to be US president. So, has the time come to put a comedian in the White House? And no, not all those inadvertent ones.
BET comic and MTV’s Punk’d mischief maker Al Shearer apparently thinks so. And seems to be have nominated himself to do just that in his election year bid mockumentary, The Other Black Guy Running For President.
Shearer’s urge to change things up more than a bit regarding the messy way political and economic matters are currently going down in this country, first led him to embark on a man in the street, primarily off the charts, investigation of his own. But soon frustrated with the slow pace of effecting social change, Shearer decided, perhaps way too optimistically, that he could do better as the commander-in-chief boss-in-charge himself.
And the result in the film is a campaign strategy, if you can call it that, combining a few moments of inspired satire with an awful lot that isn’t, including hired political consultant brainstorming sessions in pursuit of the ethnic vote.
Leading Shearer on a manic mission ordering up Chinese food to garner support from the delivery guys; donning a cartoonish sombrero and handing out Taco Bell tacos to pick up votes in his LA home base on the Chicano side of town; taking a tag-along trannie flasher to protests at banks and corporate headquarters; and when failing to elicit many signers for his ballot petition, hiring what seems like scantily attired pole dancers on their day off, to get the job done amassing male signatures over in Venice Beach.
Then there’s Shearer’s push to get nominated by turning up at the Iowa Straw Poll. Where he hands out chocolate phallus promo lollipops to the bewildered rural crowds, when not relieving himself—I kid you not—on Herman Cain’s campaign bus. Which substantially leaves one to wonder what this ‘other black guy’ platform is all about anyway, with the Dems nowhere in sight and Obama seemingly being given a pass.
Somewhat of a cross between Michael Moore and Sasha Baron Cohen, Shearer seems to be his own worst enemy as both candidate and filmmaker. This, as The Other Black Guy Running For President degenerates into a ton of toilet humor, bared breasts and crotches, and all sorts of detours that have nothing to do with politics. And though satire is often enough the more effective weapon to get the job done better in a movie, if Shearer is hardly interested in taking himself seriously, then the audience isn’t either.