Zoolander Review

Max Bowman, Writer

With Zoolander 2 coming out next year what better way to acknowledge it than to review the first one? In 2001, Ben Stiller, a guaranteed success for any movie at that stage of his career, wrote and starred in a biting satire on the fashion industry. Featuring an all’star cast with the likes of Owen Wilson and Will Ferrell, the movie seemed destined for greatness. However, on release the film was anything but praised as it was generally hated from the general audience and most critics. But as the years passed the movie started to gain a cult status as it generated a large fan base and overtime most critics even took back their statements and even praised it. Between the box office success and the huge following, it seemed the film has more than enough reason to garnish a sequel, but does Zoolander really deserve one? The simple answer, is yes.


In Zoolander Malaysia has elected a new prime minister who is in the process of enacting child labor laws. For the fashion industry higher ups this means less profit so they devise a plan to brainwash idiotic model Derek Zoolander (Ben Stiller) in an attempt  to assassinate the new prime minister. That however is only the basic gist as a surprisingly lot of amount happens in this comedy barely clocking in at 89 minutes. In fact, the ridiculous amount of character subplots, twists, and conspiracy reveals are an attempt at satire of film itself with the inane stupidity, and that’s something this film does best. Anyone can write a stupid character, but the real talent lies in making the stupidity clever, something Zoolander does very well. Ben Stiller brings makes sure the stupidity his character out is not enduring and instead likeable and charming. He may be a self absorbed idiot but he’s a charming idiot.


Zoolander’s humor would be about as funny as a rotting fish if its cast wasn’t up to par, but somehow each and every character brings something to the table. Watching the film you can tell the cast is having a good time, which is great as their energy makes the movie all the more fun. With the idiotic segments such as Zoolander and his friends having a gasoline fight you’re not only laughing at them, you’re laughing with them. Owen Wilson playing Hansel, Zoolander’s rival is sheer joy. Playing a hippie hipster cranked up to 11, the jokes were able to become more broad and have a different genre to target giving the film much needed diversity in humor. None of his jokes fall flat whether he arrives at a fashion show doing kickflips on a scooter, or philosophizing what bark is made out of. Topping it all off is Will Ferrell playing Mr. Mugatu channeling a B level bond villain into a fashion mogul. Their are so many great and well written characters in Zoolander in fact, that this entire article could be replaced with writings about them.


The most important thing however, is that the film is funny. It’s the stay with you, laugh out loud, quote-along, type of funny that define classic comedies. There’s nary a boring scene in the movie and the camerawork is kinetic enough to make sure you stay constantly engaged without oversaturating it. So many scenes are iconic that it truly deserves its cult status and more sequels to come. Heres hoping to you Zoolander.


Five Orange Mocha Frappuccinos out of Five