Plot (A-): The downfall and rise of the Derek Zoolander brings a lot of depth and flavor the story. The story needed its hero to experience despair so the audience could laugh harder at his attempt to reestablish his career and save the Prime Minister of Malaysia. Models have always been viewed as not the smartest of people (certainly Tyra Banks is doing a bang up job proving my point here) but in Zoolander we see that they’re complete morons. I mean, only the dumbest person in the world would wear an all white suit to a funeral and pronounce the word “eulogy” with a hard “g”…eugoogooly.
Action (B-): While there is some action at the end of the movie it doesn’t hold a candle the walk off we witness between Derek Zoolander and Hansel, who is so hot, Hansel! As Derek says to Matilda, “If you want a real look at the inside modeling world, watch this!” Never before have I seen comedic actors portray models with such a high level of seriousness as in that scene.
Acting & Dialogue (A): “Oh, I’m sorry did my pin get in the way of your ass?!?! Lose ten pounds immediately or never come back!” “Todd, are you not aware that I get farty and bloated when drinking a foamy latte?” These are just two of the many hilarious lines in Zoolander. Will Ferrell brought so much this film from his outrageous clothes to his weird bleach blond hair style. For many, he may have been the true star of the film. Ben Stiller not only showed his genius as a comedic actor but as a writer and director. He worked exceptionally well with the other actors in the film on screen but also gave them the right direction for them to shine on their own. Owen Wilson is equally as funny, entertaining, and stylish. Wilson correctly displayed Hansel as a free loving, living in the moment hippie, who is also an adrenaline junkie….pretty much the anti-thesis to Derek. Hansel’s opening line has always been one of my favorite, “I wasn't like every other kid, you know, who dreams about being an astronaut, I was always more interested in what bark was made out of on a tree. Richard Gere's a real hero of mine. Sting. Sting would be another person who's a hero. The music he's created over the years, I don't really listen to it, but the fact that he's making it, I respect that. I care desperately about what I do. Do I know what product I'm selling? No. Do I know what I'm doing today? No. But I'm here, and I'm gonna give it my best shot.” It’s like Hansel knows who he is and what he wants but at the same time he doesn’t.
Sex Appeal (6): There’s not really any sex appeal in this movie except for the beautiful Christine Taylor.
Director (A-): I never envisioned Ben Stiller as a director for some reason. I initially viewed him as a person that worked better in front of the camera rather than behind. Previous to Zoolander he directed The Cable Guy. While it definitely wasn’t as impactful as Reality Bites, his previous directing gig, The Cable Guy was surely an underrated comedic film. My opinion definitely changed when I first saw Zoolander. Stiller was able to balance his roles as the director and the main star with great ease. The story progressed very smoothly and never dragged on at any point. Every time I watch the movie, I always get impressed by the arbitrary amount of stars in the film such as: Lil’ Kim, Fred Durst, Donald Trump, David Bowie, Stephen Dorff, the list goes on and on. I think it’s safe to say that directing Reality Bites definitely gave Stiller street credibility but Zoolander increased his stardom tenfold.