10 funny mockumentaries to remind us about the absurdity of life
From 'Borat' to 'Spinal Tap', the funniest mockumentaries of all time
10 fun mockumentaries that will remind us of the absurdity of life
Will a little COVID-19 stop Borat (Sacha Baron Cohen), the world famous reporter, from returning to America for a sequel to his hit Borat: Cultural Insights of America for the Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan? Not only is Borat back on Amazon Prime later this month for Borat 2 - full title, Borat: Subsequent MovieFilm - he's joined by his daughter for his latest mockumentary to try and marry a family with ties to the Oval Office. Borat was hailed as Comedic Sgt. Peppers by some of the biggest names in comedy when it was released in 2006 and has since achieved cult status and is considered one of the funniest mockumentaries ever made. See the very nice company that both films join.
Pop Star: Never Stop, Never Stop (2016)
Conner4Reals (Andy Samberg) second album Connquest may have earned a single poop emoji from Rolling Stone, but Popstar: Never Stop Never Stop deserves five fire emojis. The 2016 comedy by the Lonely Island crew is narrated in the form of a musical documentary about the breakup of Style Boyz and the solo career of frontman Conner4Real. Loaded with cameos from artists like Mariah Carey, Justin Timberlake, Justin Bieber and Michael Bolton, the real highlights come via the musical styles of Conner and his crew, with catchy bangers like "Finest Girl (Bin Laden Song)" and the anti-humble Anthem "I am so humble." Originally a box office disappointment, the pop star legend has only grown in recent years. "I think when we saw it on a lot of best-of-the-decade lists and people were singing along to the drafthouse screenings and wanted to do this special edition DVD, we were just like, 'Hey, this is really so nice People are talking about pop star again, ”Samberg told EW earlier this year. “It would be even better if we could bring out a film that was doing well in the theater when it came out. [Laughs] But we will definitely take it. "- Derek Lawrence
Related: The Lonely Island boys look back on the road to Never Stop Never Stop
Drop Dead Gorgeous (1999)
Drop Dead Gorgeous, a first flop from both critics and the box office, has since rightfully claimed its crown as a Campy cult classic. This jet black satire from 1999 centers on a tiny Minnesota town prepping for the Sarah Rose Cosmetics Mount Rose American Teen Princess Pageant with a star-studded cast that includes Kirsten Dunst, Denise Richards, Ellen Barkin, Allison Janney and Kirstie Alley include Brittany Murphy and Amy Adams. Directed by Michael Patrick Jann, this mockumentary is an edgy mashup of sugary Midwestern femininity and deadly anger where nothing - nothing - is more important than winning. After all, Jesus loves winners. - Devan Coggan
Related: Denise Richards reveals background actors who walked off the set during famous Drop Dead Gorgeous scenes
The original Borat, which has the full title: Borat: American Cultural Insights for a Glorious Nation in Kazakhstan, plays Sacha Baron Cohen as the fictional Kazakh title journalist. Much of the film is made up of unwritten vignettes, with Cohen's Borat interacting with Americans who genuinely believe he is a foreigner who doesn't know American customs at all. The film spawned a wide variety of copycat cats, but that's not surprising given its incredible success, including an Oscar nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay. It's not for the faint of heart as Borat's iconic green thong and nude wrestling are just two of his provocative centerpieces. But we'll always remember how the movie that gave Creeper Bros the slogan "Very niiiiiice". - Maureen Lee handlebars
Related: Sacha Baron Cohen says the FBI followed him while he was filming Borat
Sacha Baron Cohen followed Borat's success with this 2009 mockumentary about a gay Austrian fashion journalist traveling to America in hopes of starting a celebrity interview show. There are many outrageous hijinks in his pursuit of fame - including the memorable Harrison Ford call to "F-off" - and like Borat, not only does it push the boundaries, it blurs them completely. But all the exhilaration also has a purpose. "The whole film has seriously questionable taste, and there will of course be debates about what is and what is not being staged," EW said in his review of the film. “Anyone looking for purity in satire should stay away. However, a vision is at work in Brno - the film is a poisonous arrow aimed at the new heart of American hypocrisy: our fake tolerant, fake benevolent, fake liberated but still insanely closed culture of fame. "Come on for the laugh, stay for the pointy satire. - Laura Huff
Related: Sacha Baron Cohen got Paula Abdul to be in Brno and didn't even invite her to the premiere
This is Spinal Tap (1984)
No list of the funniest mockumentaries would be complete without This Is Spinal Tap, a film that brought the genre to "11". Directed by Rob Reiner, the mock rock doc follows an aging British heavy metal band called Spinal Tap (played by Christopher Guest, Michael McKean and Harry Shearer) on a disappointing US concert tour. Targeting the ridiculousness of rock & roll excess and the music industry in general, the film has no shortage of funny scenes and quotable lines - from the mini Stonehenge fiasco to the behind-the-scenes loss before a show (hello Cleveland!). Though it wasn't a huge hit when it was first released in 1984 (Reiner told Newsweek he believes this may be because everyone thought the film was a documentary about a real band no one has heard of would have). This Is Spinal Tap has since achieved cult classic status and is viewed by many as the film that put mockumentaries on the map. - Rebecca Detken
Related: Spinal Tap's Derek Smalls tells the legendary band's untold stories
Waiting for Guffman (1996)
The 1996 mockumentary from director and co-writer Christopher Guest Waiting for Guffman takes him to the fictional Blaine, Mo. (stool capital of the United States!), Where he becomes Corky St. Clair, a creative visionary (depending on who you ask ) A ragged group of humble Blaineians who achieved theatrical fame with the debut production of his groundbreaking musical Red, White and Blaine. And as if the sacred occasion of the city's bicentenary wasn't enough pressure on amateur thespians, the stakes shoot through the roof as Corky promises a Broadway producer - the highly anticipated Guffman - will be in the audience, who has the power to potentially act launch the dedicated ensemble to fame. Nothing never happens on Mars, but the same cannot be said of Blaine. - Mary Sollosi
Related: Thespis Disciple Ranking in Waiting for Guffman
Afraid of a Black Hat (1994)
Before writer and director Rusty Cundieff rose to fame with projects like Tales From the Hood and Chappelle's Show, he impressed Sundance audiences with a fun and unwavering look at hip-hop culture in his low-budget mockumentary Fear of the 1993 Black hat. Inspired by This Is Spinal Tap, Cundieff works quickly to lambast the occasional misogyny and homophobia that is ingrained in hardcore rap, but also the media scolding for being unable to analyze the music's message. The jokes come quick and funny - think Mel Brooks or the Sugar Brothers with the half-humor in the background (watch out for the cluster of ices); and unlike so many older comedies that don't impress modern audiences other than the beeps, Fear of the Black Hat's portrayal of the police during a traffic obstruction feels as timely as it did in a commentary on Rodney King in the early 90s. - Sarah Sprague
Related: Antebellum Director Says Black Art "Is Most Monitored"
Best in Show (2000)
Eugene Levy and Catherine O’Hara are Comedy Golds on Emmy-winning Schitt’s Creek, but Best on Show 2000 was the first many viewers introduced to the dynamic duo that also played a married couple in the Mockumentary. Levy and O’Hara are perfect as Gerry and Cookie Fleck, a middle-class couple who bring their dog Winky to the Mayflower Kennel Club Dog Show. Their awkward interviews, ridiculously bad songs about terriers and flares about cookies "hundreds" of ex-flames are almost too funny to believe, but Levy (who co-wrote the film with director Christopher Guest) and O'Hara's winning appearances the movie in reality. And with Guest, Parker Posey, Jennifer Coolidge, Jane Lynch, Michael McKean and Fred Willard rounding off the cast, Best in Show created a world - filled with adorable dogs and the lovable special balls obsessed with them - that we want to visit again and again. - Rachel Yang
See also: Catherine O'Hara and Eugene Levy look back on their first Emmy win together after the big night at Schitt's Creek
What We Do In The Shadows (2014)
It might be better known as a TV series now, but What We Do in the Shadows wouldn't run for two seasons and count on FX if the original 2014 film wasn't such a perfect mockumentary. What We Do in the Shadows, co-directed by Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi, combines their dead New Zealand humor with a really exciting horror film. Clement and Waititi appear on camera, as do two of the vampires who share an apartment in Wellington and do their best to get unsuspecting victims to drink their blood without attracting too much attention to the modern world. Vampires are a worn-out horror subgenre, but portraying them as a bunch of contentious roommates turned out to be the perfect way to freshen up storytelling. - Christian Holub
See also: Watch the First Three Minutes That Inspired What We Do In The Shadows
A Mighty Wind (2003)
Christopher Isest, the star of This Is Spinal Tap, had the mockumentary sang again with A Mighty Wind, who followed three folk music groups (including Guest and his Spinal Tap co-stars Harry Shearer and Michael McKean as "The Folksmen") as they get together for a television concert. A Mighty Wind is more brilliant and reserved than Spinal Tap (there are no exploding drummers here), but musically with really good folk melodies, especially the jubilant title track and the Oscar-nominated "A Kiss at the End of the Rainbow". ”Performed by Eugene Levy and Catherine O'Hara. But the real highlight could be the late great Fred Willard, whose performance as catchphrase manager makes you wonder why this movie is no longer finding love. Or in his language: "Hey, what happened?" - Tyler Aquilina
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