Blue steel. Even school girls are mad about Derek...
dir Ben Stiller
scr Drake Sather, Ben Stiller, John Hamburg
with Ben Stiller, Christine Taylor, Owen Wilson, Will Ferrell, Milla Jovovich, Jerry Stiller, Jon Voight, David Duchovny, Justin Theroux, David Bowie, Billy Zane, Anne Meara, Andy Dick, Winona Ryder, Garry Shandling, Vince Vaughn
release US 28.Sep.01; UK 30.Nov.01
Paramount 01/US 1h29
3 out of 5 stars
See also:
ZOOLANDER 2 (2016)
R E V I E W   B Y   R I C H   C L I N E
3% body fat, 1% brain activity We're in the Austin Powers universe with this sublimely silly spoof of the cut-throat world of male modelling.

Derek Zoolander (Stiller Jr) is the good-looking but dull-witted catwalk king who's having a crisis of confidence with the arrival of serious competition in the form of Hansel (Wilson). Then the evil designer Mugatu (Ferrell) brainwashes him to commit a political murder. And it's up to a gorgeous Time magazine reporter (Taylor) to sort out the mess ... and fall for Derek of course.

While not particularly well-directed, the film still looks fantastic and bristles with humour that keeps us laughing from start to finish. Stiller is hilarious as the always posing Derek, oblivious to the subtleties of the world around him and unable to comprehend even the simplest concepts. And surrounding him is a cast of classic comic performers that includes his parents (Stiller Sr and Meara, as Derek's agent and a very loud street protestor), as well as much of the New York glitterati. Most are playing themselves, but a few get to lampoon their images (notably Voight and Duchovny), while others do goofy pastiche roles (Ferrell, Jovovich) and others are virtually unrecognisable (Dick, Theroux).

There are several moments of inspired hilarity that help paper over the less successful stretches, and the combination of stupid gags and smart in-jokes is just about right. In fact, the whole thing is just so good-hearted and entertaining that it seems petty to complain that maybe it isn't quite funny or clever enough.
themes, innuendo, vulgarity cert 12 1.Nov.01

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