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An absurd but smart send-up of our image-obsessed culture
ken_gewertz24 June 2002
Released a few short weeks after Sept. 11, Zoolander became the target of "this is why they hate us" diatribes. I didn't see it until months later and immediately recognized what I can only hope I would have seen if I had watched it earlier--that this is a superb satire/farce. There aren't many movies that manage to be both silly and smart at the same time, and this is one. It is not only a send-up of the modeling and fashion industries, admittedly easy targets, but of our whole image-obsessed culture which commodifies love, spirituality, patriotism, heroism just as easily and unthinkingly as it does kitchen appliances. This is not a "stupid" movie, even though it is about stupid people and stupid situations. It keeps the targets of its satire within its sights at every moment, never letting that focus flag to pursue maudlin subplots, but at the same time, it is unfailingly hilarious, with marvelous comic acting, sight-gags, sets, and costumes. The screen is just packed with visual jokes at almost every moment. This is not a movie that anyone needs to be embarrassed to watch or enjoy. But it is also just plain damned fun!
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A Classic of the Idiot Genre
erialc018 December 2004
Since Zoolander was released, I think I can safely say that it's become one of the most popular dumb comedies of the past ten years (a decade that was all too saturated with dumb comedies). Maybe it's the tongue-in-cheek attitude, or the clever writing, or the fact that it's immensely quotable ("I'm pretty sure there's more to life than being really, really, ridiculously good looking"). But whatever it is, it makes for a terrifically fun movie.

Ben Stiller is Derek Zoolander, three-time male model of the year, whose brainpower never quite caught up to his really, really ridiculous good looks. After losing his title to up-and-coming model Hansel (he's so hot right now), played by a Zen-ed out Owen Wilson, and the death of three of his model friends in a tragic gasoline fight accident, he goes on a quest to find his purpose in life. Turns out, his purpose in life is as the face of Mugatu (Will Ferrel with the world's best hair)'s new Derelicte fashion campaign--or so he's led to believe.

The plot is not strong. The characters are not fleshed out. But Ben Stiller keeps Derek's stupidity hysterical instead of irritating, and the rest of the cast adds gimmick after gimmick to keep things running. (Come on, the coal mines of New Jersey? Tell me that's not funny.)
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Zoolander is stupid funny!
gregherk21 October 2001
Derek Zoolander is stupid. So is his movie. But by no means, is Zoolander humorless. Directed by and starring Ben Stiller, Zoolander is a very funny movie, if you know what to expect. Based on a character that Stiller created for the 1996 VH1 Fashion Awards, Derek Zoolander was originally intended to satirize the fashion industry. The movie does no less and as a result, has received some very negative patron reviews. Audiences went into Zoolander expecting another Ben Stiller, Meet the Parents-type comedy, and when they got an offbeat movie about the fashion industry's plot to assassinate the prime minister of Malaysia, they didn't know how to react. To enjoy Zoolander, one has to forget all expectations and see the movie for what it is supposed to be: ridiculous.

Derek Zoolander (Stiller) is the fashion industry's number one male model, but his career is slouching and boy beauty Hansel (Owen Wilson) provides tough competition. Fashion designer Mugatu (Will Ferrell) takes advantage of this and Zoolander's stupidity, and brainwashes him to kill the Malaysian prime minister, after he put an end to vital fashion industry sweatshops. The talented cast and an excellent soundtrack add absurdity to the already farcical plot. Zoolander gives both Ferrell and Wilson the opportunity to do what they do best. For Saturday Night Live's Ferrell that is embracing and developing the demented, while for Meet the Parents' Wilson, it is the chance to play a comedic, confident, character role. Stiller's father and wife also appear in supporting roles, with Jerry Stiller as Maury Ballstein, Derek's agent, and Christine Taylor as Matilda Jeffries, a TIME magazine reporter. Jerry Stiller, like Wilson, always manages to find humor in every role he plays, and in Zoolander this remains especially true. Taylor, being a veteran of the Brady Bunch movies, is not stranger to satire either. Well-chosen and placed music adds laughs and heightens the tone and feel of the movie. With songs ranging from Wham!'s `Wake Me Up Before You Go Go' playing as cruising music for Derek and his male model friends, and Michael Jackson's `Beat It' as the background music for a face-off between Derek and Hansel, any remaining seriousness is diminished. And yet even more surprise and absurdity is added by the many unexpected cast members and cameo appearances. Others appearing in Zoolander include David Duchovny, Jon Voight, Vince Vaughn, Andy Dick, David Bowie, Cuba Gooding Jr., Winona Ryder, and even Ralph Lauren's own male model, Tyson Beckford. I can understand people disliking this movie; it is temperamental. This is the kind of movie that varies depending on the audience and a person's expectation. Generally though, if you keep an open mind and realize that it is not meant to be serious in any way, your view of the movie shouldn't go anywhere but up. Zoolander is absurd, ridiculous, and overall, an incredibly stupid movie. I suggest you see it.
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Funny For Those Who Like Absurd Humor
ccthemovieman-119 July 2007
This has to be a movie that people would either laugh their butt off watching, or turn it off and never finishing it because it was so stupid. Fortunately, as someone who loves absurd humor, I was entertained by it. Yes, it's one of the dumbest films you'll ever see, but it's supposed to be stupid, a satire on the shallow people and world of male fashion models.

Ben Stiller is outstanding as "Derek Zoolander," the brainless model who's number one male model status is upended by newcomer "Hansel," played by Owen Wilson. In light of Wilson's recent real-life drug problems, I couldn't help but think "how can these actors play absurd roles like this and be normal?" It's almost understandable by so many in the film business are whacked! You have to hand it to them, though: Stiller, Wilson, Millo Jovovich and Will Ferrell are good at playing weird people, as they do here. But it's all in fun - plus a serious comment about child labor - and the movie is simply to be enjoyed for what it is. Of course, it's stupid overall, but it's a spoof, like the Austin Powers films.

Film fans and celebrity geeks will enjoy all the cameos in here, along with the wild outfits - male and female - and all the goofy looks on the faces, mainly Stiller's poses. In between all the dumbness is some smart satire on several topics dealing with the fashion business. Just know what you are getting into here, and you should get enough laughs to make it an entertaining hour-and-a-half.
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The previews didn't lie, you get what you see.
synefra9 October 2001
I gave this movie a 9/10 for this reason, if you have seen the previews, you know what you are going to see. You are going to see a movie that is exactly the kind of humor that the preview TELLS and SHOWS you it contains. They don't expect Oscars, and arent even trying for them. This movie is not to be taken seriously, its for FUN, people. The movie's main characters did great jobs, and had good charisma between them, there were tons of other actors putting in small bits (some of which were amazingly funny, I laughed out loud in a few parts, and I almost never do that). There were some truly funny moments, moments I found much funnier than I thought the film would be. When I told friends and family I saw it they all said, `You did?' when I said I liked it they said with even more incredulity, `You did?!' because I don't like certain kinds of stupid humor. I liked the Three Amigos, but hated Austin Powers. Potty humor doesn't do it for me. But this movie was surprisingly witty and funny without thinking it had to be disgusting to be humorous. There were a few parts I could have lived without, gladly, but overall you get what you think you are going to get, and more!
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Gets better each time I watch it
dangermouselor25 August 2005
A really great take on the modelling world. Each Time I watch it I see something else that makes me howl with laughter. Out of all the Stiller/Wilson collaborations this is definitely the funniest. There is so much going on in the film and I love the way all the celebs join in on the joke. Zoolander has a great soundtrack a very humorous plot and is light enough to enjoy whatever the mood.

I would definitely recommend a few viewings before you make judgement. Will Ferrell is manic as Mugato and Wilsons Hansel is as laid back as all his all his characters. The scene in the coal mine is the best. Enjoy whilst partaking of an Orange Mocha Frappucino. More from the duo please or a Zoolander II
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A hilarious 'poke' at the fashion industry
silentcheesedude27 June 2004
When Zoolander came out, I remember big deal plugs that were made for this film by the media. The movie, after all, is poking fun at entertainment, in particular, the fashion and model industry. This was a hilarious take on it, and Zoolander, our main character, is stupidly lovable. Ben Stiller proves once again his flexibility with his comedic acting. Just watch 'Meet the Parents'and this, you'll think it's 2 different actors. Showing you how much work Ben can do, he also helped write and produce the movie. Owen Wilson usually ends up in a movie with Ben, and he's hilarious too. And of course Will Ferrell is always a riot. Read the Plot Outline in the details, there's not much to it. But you don't watch movies like this for incredible story lines, do you?

No, it's not an oscar winning comedy, most aren't. It's not an intelligent look at real-life, it's not the greatest storyline driven kind of movie, and it doesn't have top notch acting. But it's incredibly funny, especially the DVD. The DVD is filled with so many extra goodies, it's worth getting. The movie is filled with cameos like David Bowie, Paris Hilton, Billy Zane, AH! There are so many, you just have to see the list yourself.

Rent or buy it, and leave your brain on the table next to the popcorn. Because there's more to life then being really, really, ridiculously smart.
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Zoolander is funny enough to excuse for how spectacularly goofy it gets
Screen_Blitz14 October 2017
Ben Stiller is the titular character of this comedy that does not believe in being particularly smart. It is dumb, but with such infectious comedic energy by Stiller and friend Owen Wilson poured on screen, it is funny enough to look past how ridiculous it gets. Stiller, also filling in the director's chair, conducts a comedy that lends a satirical look at the modeling industry and how competition can bring out both the best and the worst in those who compete for the big prize. This is where the small, but significant amount of cleverness comes into the picture. But it is Stiller and Wilson are smoke the air with their comedic energy to make this into a film that offers just enough laughs and fun to compensate for its short runtime. While it certainly isn't consistently funny, with occasional botched attempts at humor, it knows how to tickle the funny bone for a film that resists against engaging the brain. This film follows acclaimed fashion model Derek Zoolander (played by Ben Stiller), a three-time consecutive award winner who is on his way to claiming his fourth prize as "Model of The Year". All this hopes are eventually crushed when the prize goes to his rival Hansel (played by Owen Wilson). To make matters worse, he find himself on the cover of a magazine mocked as an "idiot" by columnist Matilda (played by Christine Taylor). Throwing in the towel, Zoolander decides to pursue on a new path, possibly opening up an institute for children who have trouble reading. His goals are soon put a halt by dubious fashion designer Mugatu (played by Will Ferrell) who uses a machine to brainwash him into killing the prime minister of Malaysia as an outcry against child labor. With this mind out of whack, you must turn to Matilda and form a bond with his rival Hansel to help from committing this diabolical plot.

Ben Stiller leads a cast of comedic veterans who seem to have fun acting like dimwits, and the result is a ride through whacky stupidity. But if you are willing to scoot past the dominating stupidity and the politically offensive plot of assassinating a foreign leader for a debatable cause, you are rewarded with a hilarious good time. This film offers a clever escapism into dumb territory where acting foolish equates to gut-busting laughter and its cast prove their ability for displaying solid comedic timing, even when it fails on an occasional basis. Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson cook up an infectious comic energy in nearly scene they both meet on screen, and the energy unravels into funny laugh-out-loud sequences including a fashion showdown scene, another segment owing homage to '2001: A Space Odyssey', and the final scene showcasing their attempts at turning the tables on the comically antagonistic Will Ferrell. Supplementing these scenes are loads of unexpected celebrity cameos including David Bowie, Natalie Portman, Lenny Kravitz, Cuba Gooding Jr. and many others. On the other hand, there are moments where the cast falls shorts when taking a stab at the funny bone, whether it is from attempting slapstick gags that are better fit for 'The Three Stooges', or spewing vulgar, but PG-13 friendly dialogue. No need to worry though, Stiller, Wilson, and Ferrell manage to compensate for some of the dull moments. Christine Taylor, Stiller's wife, and Jerry Stiller (playing Zoolander's agent), his dad, have a few good lines, but perhaps not enough to count for memorable roles. For Taylor, her most memorable would be an orgy scene that demands for editing cuts when the film was initially slapped with an R-rating.

Zoolander is a comedy loaded with laughter and infectious charisma, and Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson, and Will Ferrell deserve the credit for this. Yes, it is goofy, but it is a goofy ride that is worth hopping into if you are hungry for some feel-good laughs. While the movie isn't consistently with its hilarity, it is definitely enough to warrant a viewing for a fair number of comedic fanatics.
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AUSTIN Posers--Hip, Daffy, Yet Kinda Sweet
dtb26 March 2002
In Entertainment Weekly, Ben Stiller described this feature-length adventure of the moronic male model he created for the VH1 Fashion Awards as "MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE meets EYES OF LAURA MARS." Me, I can sum it up in two words: "AUSTIN Posers." No, better yet, I'll boil it down to one word: "endearing." That's right, endearing! As lighthearted as it is lightheaded, this daffy spoof of conspiracy thrillers and the mad, mod world of male models and other hipsters has a surprising undercurrent of sweetness to it. Star/director/co-writer/co-producer Stiller plays dopey Derek Zoolander as a gentle, essentially kind-hearted naif under his hip veneer. The same is true of Owen Wilson, putting his twang and quirky humor to good use as Derek's rustic yet hippy-dippy rival-turned-ally Hansel. I suspect folks will like ZOOLANDER even better on DVD, since there are tons of hilarious extended scenes and deleted scenes as well as the original Zoolander TV sketches that Stiller & Co. did for VH1. As Derek says in the voiceover intros on the DVD menu, the ZOOLANDER disc is a wonderful introduction to "the world of DiviDuh"! :-)
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Silly and good for a few laughs.
MartinHafer29 December 2016
If you are looking for a cerebral comedy, you certainly should not pick "Zoolander". It's dumb, rather silly and...dumb. But, it's also good for a few laughs and is a very amiable time-passer filled with lots of amazing cameos.

The film is about a narcissistic idiot male model, Derek Zoolander (Ben Stiller). He's world famous but also quite empty-headed...so empty-headed that Mugatu* (Will Ferrell) is planning on brainwashing him into murdering the president of Malaysia. Why? Well, because Mugatu and the other evil fashion designers want to keep operating their sweatshops around the globe and the new leader of Malaysia is in favor of outlawing child labor! Fortunately, a writer for "Time", Matilda Jefferies (Christine Taylor**) is there to help uncover the plot and with the help of another really stupid male model (Owen Wilson) the three of them work to disrupt Mugatu's plans.

I will freely admit that the plot is pretty shallow and nonsensical as well as the ending being a bit dumb. However, the film is still works quite well because it is still quite funny and pokes a lot of fun at the fashion/modeling industry. While it's not a hilarious, must-see comedy, it does the trick and makes you laugh. And, it's interesting to see the many, many, many cameos by the rich and famous (such as David Bowie, Donald Trump, Natalie Portman, Lenny Kravitz, Fabio, Gwen Stafani and many more) as well as a chance to see nepotism in action, as Ben Stiller's parents (Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara), his sister (Amy Stiller) and his wife (Taylor)!

*Mugatu is the name of a nasty white ape-like monster from a Star Trek episode, "A Private Little War".

**If Taylor looks familiar, you might just remember her as the actress who played Marcia in the fabulous "Brady Bunch" movies.
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Delightfully moronic
cbdemented29 September 2001
Is it dumb? Yes. Do you get dumber watching it? Yes. There is little argument that Zoolander is the dumbest movie of the new millennium, but it is so well done in it's stupidity it is really worth seeing. I found myself breathless from excessive laughter several times throughout this picture, so leave your brain in the lobby and prepare to laugh at perhaps some of the dumbest jokes in a Hollywood movie, ever!
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Very intelligent movie about stupidity
CinefanR31 January 2012
Not a favorite on the first viewing, when it premiered, this movie is - I have to admit it now - hysterical. Don't forget that it's a parody, it's quirky, completely ridiculous, insane & over the top and yes, people in it act stupidly. I'm not a fan of Ben Stiller, I haven't enjoyed any other movies of his, but this is spot on. I say justice has been done: it's been finally revealed that stupidity knows no gender when it comes to the fashion world, and it comes in epic proportions.

By the way, the fashion world redeemed itself by participating in this movie. Watch for the countless cameos from famous people in the industry. The fact that they accepted to make a little fun of themselves shows that they do have a sense of humor, and that's quite refreshing.

Oh, and Jon Voight deserves an Oscar for his deadpan performance as Derek's estranged father. He made me break down and cry tears of laughter over the terrible drama of the Zoolander family. Words are useless here, just watch the movie!
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Man It's Exhausting
daveisit22 April 2005
Derek (Ben Stiller) and Hansel (Owen Wilson) are the worlds greatest two models. And nobody in the world could play them quite like Stiller and Wilson. Stiller was also a writer and the director of Zoolander and knows how to put together a movie.

While the movie often focuses on Derek and Hansel out modelling each other, I believe the real contest was off screen being played out on screen between the two. This being who could play the more sarcastic and larger than life model. Stiller may win this, but the sheer arrogance of Wilson's on screen demeanor tips the scale in his favour for me. When the two work together they are up there with the great duo's of comedy.

This is far from Stiller's best work however, moving along a little too slowly at times. Having said this it is still well worth a look and should give you plenty of laughs providing you appreciate the Stiller Wilson combo.
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"Zoolander" is stupid in every way
napierslogs20 July 2010
"Zoolander" is stupid, but it's stupid in every way: its characters, its plot, and its jokes, but that starts adding up to fun. I will admit that I laugh most times I watch it, sometimes I groan because of the stupidity, but I usually have a smile on my face.

The plot? Derek Zoolander (Ben Stiller) is a washed-up model who has been brainwashed to kill a foreign Prime Minister. Sound stupid? That's because it's supposed to be. We have a handful of male models, all of them with IQs lower than their body fat percentage, and all of them getting into situations that they are not mentally equipped for.

You can't watch "Zoolander" for its story or its characters, you can only watch it for its inane humour. And the fact that these are men being shown off as models and not women.
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Behind Bars
tedg27 February 2002
Warning: Spoilers
Spoilers herein.

This is yet another film which is what it is about.

It is about fatuous celebrities, under the control of corporate machines, acting ridiculous for our pleasure and thinking that what they are doing is cool because they understand the irony. Ho Hum. If Stiller and Wilson actually worked with the dimensions of this and gave us something new, it would be a worthy enterprise. But though `Tenenbaum's' and this project both approach the irony, they both are prisoners of it.
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Great satire
alansabljakovic-390449 April 2019
I really liked it and it is reall comedy gold. Most of the jokes were enjoyable and laughable. Owen Wilson and Ben Stiller are always very funny duo and they make great comedy movies together. This is my first time watch and yeah I know I'm a bit too late but better ever than never.
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Essentially just one long joke: our hero is stupid.
Pjtaylor-96-13804419 October 2018
'Zoolander (2001)' has its fair share of funny moments but it's essentially just one long, sort of uninspired joke: our protagonist is a male model and is 'therefore' stupid. That's not to say that the two identifiers are intrinsically linked, rather that the film seems to tie them together - perhaps unwittingly - in a way that almost seems mean-spirited, or at least approaching that. This is through omission as opposed to inclusion, necessarily, but it still stands out as an issue considering that every male model character is also portrayed as, shall we say, less than intelligent. This definitely becomes played-out pretty quickly considering that the gags all stem from this, the film's apparent core principle and, as I mentioned, only real, reoccurring joke (or at least the basis for it). Neither of the main issues I've mentioned, not the near mean-spirit nor lack of innovation, are helped by the fact that the main supporting player is portrayed as being just as comically "bone-headed" as our hero; this doesn't provide a good foil for (or contrast to) our lead and it definitely doesn't help with the film's stereotyping problem. It's not like there isn't any enjoyment to be had and, like I mentioned, there are a few laughs here and there. However, a lack of originality does seep in pretty quickly and the picture isn't all that compelling in general. 6/10
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A great film that delivers lots of laughs
mcnulty-chris6 September 2013
Zoolander is definitely one of my favorite comedies. It is a feel-good, cleverly-written film that will leave a majority of viewers satisfied. The acting is great, and the story flows well--overall a very solid comedy.

Ben Stiller plays Derek Zoolander, a male model who is far from the sharpest tool in the shed, which is showcased in the most hilarious of ways. Suddenly, Derek's world as THE top model is disrupted when Hansel, brilliantly played by Owen Wilson, arrives on the scene and disrupts Zoolander's throne with Hansel's seemingly effortless, avant garde approach to male modeling.

This is my very first review, so I apologize for the lack of well-articulated perspective. What I can tell you is that this movie is hilarious and absolutely worth a viewing.

This really should be in the 7 - 8 range on IMDb.

This film is definitely worth a watch.

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Quite simply, one of the crappiest movies ever made.
lordburn59114 May 2003
After spending today reviewing all of my favorite movies, I had to pump out a review for the heinously bad Ben Stiller vehicle, Zoolander. Previously liking the principal cast of this film, (including Owen Wilson and Will Ferrel), I was more than a little dissapointed after seeing what a clumsy mess Zoolander turned into. The concept wasn't great to begin with, but such terrible execution on the tried and true Dumb and Dumber formula turned this film into an example of what not to do in a comedy. There are a few moments that may cause tiny giggles, but these moments are also mind numbingly dumb. Proceed with caution... this movie sucks.
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No way!
t-lund-115 October 2004
I found this one of the most stupid films I have ever seen, and I needed my wife to tickle me in order to be able to laugh while watching it. The film was so bad that my wife actually got angry in the middle of it, asking how it was possible that this film was ever produced.

I have nothing against Ben Stiller, in fact I think he is one of the most brilliant comedy-actors around, but in this film he not only misses the target, he shoots blanks!

Maybe it's just me not being able to relate to the humor the film is built around, but on the other hand I am a guy that laughs fairly easy, and understands most jokes I see on screen. Just not with this film. It could be me that is wrong, but I choose to say that it is this film and not me there is something wrong with!

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Worth seeing.
jakeblackshear18 March 2004
Ever wondered what it was like to be a male model? Well, watching Zoolander probably isn't going to give you any accurate representation of what being a male model is really like but it's definitely a hilarious spoof on modeling and fashion industry. Zoolander relies heavily on the stereotypes of self-absorbed male models depicting them as airheads with their senses often limited to strictly fashion. I recommend you completely disregard Stiller's previous comedies Something About Mary, Meet the Parents, and Along Came Polly when approaching this film as it strays from his usual `boyfriend with bad luck who gets into hilariously embarrassing situations' style comedy. His role this film shows character diversity in Stiller not seen in his past films and it works.

The sheer stupidity of the main characters Derek Zoolander (Ben Stiller) and rival male model Hansel (Owen Wilson) are the primary sources of the genuine laughs found in Zoolander. Set in modern day New York City, the plot revolves around a sinister fashion designer named Mugatu (Will Ferrell) and his plot to brainwash male model Derek Zoolander to kill the Prime Minister of Malaysia. The Prime Minister harms Mugatu's clothing factories (run by children) by imposing child labor laws, angering Mugatu and other fashion designers. Although the plot is far-fetched it never tries to be taken any more seriously than a comic book. Once you see the remarks and reactions of the two main characters it's impossible to take seriously and often funny. One example of the hilarious stupidity in this movie: Early on in the movie there is a `Male Model of the Year' awards ceremony Zoolander, being accustomed to winning the award several years in a row runs to the stage despite the fact Hansel's name had been announced to accept the award. Zoolander proceeds to give his cocky award speech when he the host taps his shoulder and points to Hansel standing behind him. Zoolander is struck with disbelief and it makes for a truly funny scene. There isn't much romance in this film but there is a little between a reporter named Matilda (Christina Applegate) and Zoolander but it's never really explored in the film and most of its referred to with humor. Picture Zoolander as a feature-length Saturday Night Live skit and you should know what kind of humor to expect.

As I said before to enjoy this movie you can't take it seriously because you will take it as it was not intended. This was a movie that caught me by surprise, I didn't think I'd like it and thought of myself as being `dragged' to see it but was very happy with after watching. I never thought I'd be interested in seeing something about a male model (because I have no interest on the subject) but modeling is just what it makes fun of. Zoolander definitely achieves what it sets out to do and doesn't try to take itself seriously at all. Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson are compliment each others roles very well and are extremely funny together.

Bottom Line- 7.5 out of 10: Better than `fair' but not great, lots of laughs to be had but it relies on the same `stupid' humor the entire movie. Even though the humor can be repetitive at times, it still managed to be funny for the most part throughout the movie. I consider it a solid comedy worth renting for those seeking laughter.
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Zoolander - Colorful, Creative, Original and Thoughtful.
LeslieLLKing8 September 2005
Warning: Spoilers
By the exaggerated tagline, "3% body fat, and 1% brain activity," I just knew that Zoolander was going to be smart and funny. And, it was. If you can rise above the literal visual interpretation to the gasoline pump fight, you'll find it too, has an underlying educational, or at least, helpful message. The characterizations of good guy versus bad guy are whimsical, creative, colorful, and funny. Derek Zoolander, (Ben Stiller) is Ben's wonderfully exaggerated version of the male model, one who is offering his best attempt to be "Balls Models" 4th year in a row, model of the year. Sadly, he loses to Hansel, (Owen Wilson) a sweet blue, green, star eyed, soft lined, model. At the loss, quirky, carefree and complex, Derek questions his reflection in a puddle of water, "Who Am I?" In search of an answer to his question, he returns home to the coal mines of New Jersey, where his generally reluctant father, Larry Zoolander ( John Voight) and what looks to be his two evidently, (one Judah Friedlander) inarticulate brothers, reside. But, it is Derek's agent, Maury Ballstein (Jerry Stiller) who encourages him to return to New York, so that Derek can take on the assignment, as model for Mugato's (Will Ferrell) "Derelicte," campaign. Maury is passionate and sincerely wants for his models to succeed, at making a living, in modeling. Mugato is obsessed with having Derek assassinate Malaysia's prime minister, Hassan (Woodrow W. Asai), one with a fondness for fashion and vogue, and a desire to increase pay standards, in the production industry. Derek takes the job, but little does he know that Mugato's black leathered assistant, Katinka, (Milla Jovovich) will be leading him into a day spa, that is more like a torture chamber, one designed to brainwash him into assassinating Malaysia's leader. Matilada Jeffries, (Christine Taylor) a reporter for Time, assigned to reporting on fashion events, will soon find herself in the midst of discovering a personal life, originating from her professional one. And fortunately, Hansel, is more than a competitor to Derek, but a friend, who saves both Derek and the leader of Malaysia, from an untimely death.

The entire script is so creatively and colorfully articulated and presented, that one cannot help but have just so much fun, or alternatively be filled with suspense, as to whether or not Mugato will have his way with Derek. David Duchovny's scene, (mystery man on the cell phone), as scruffy bearded, eye glassed, and glass encased hand, J.P. Prewitt, at the cemetery, is really well done. In an interestingly woven monologue, he begins by explaining buried models' pre-mature deaths, scenes that include butt cheeks and abs sculpted on gravestones. It's very Tim "Robbinseque" in mood and tone and very well performed.

Zoolander was much more rich in plot, characterization, and development than I had expected, after hearing, that "it didn't get great reviews." And the story still results in a very happy ending. Good wins over evil, and good guy hero gets girl. So who is Derek Zoolander? Answer: A really sweet guy, who is cute, funny, sensitive, articulate (although can't say eulogy, and instead says ulogee, but just adds more to his cute and funny attributes), and one who, we gather, has a terrific girlfriend, and cool best friend, with whom he pursues one of his true life long passions, to open up a school for kids, "to read really good." Zoolander is absolutely a "hip"comedy for every audience member.
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Insulting the intelligence of viewers
psyche4219 June 2005
Derek Zoolander is probably the most wanted male model in the world. He looks like an angel,his body is flawless,his gestures and movements are perfectly taught.Unfortunately,perfect appearance doesn't always mean perfect intellect.Derek is the most stupid being in the world... ...and this is one of the worst movies ever.I really don't want to disappoint people who like it but I HAVE NO CHOICE!In my opinion this movie should be banned,because there's a big possibility of getting as dumb as Derek is.I literally felt my brain cells exploding during watching it.Ben Stiller had to be in really bad situation when he took this role. So if you want to see this movie...DON'T DO IT!!!
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CRAP. Total unbelievable absolute CRAP.
shumpalumpagus21 March 2002
Shoot yourself in the foot. This would be better than watching ZOOLANDER. Better yet, pay someone $3.95 to do it. Or burn the money, that's still good because you can enjoy the few seconds of flame. But do not watch this. It will devour your soul. It is a movie that makes me want to puke until I am dead.

Seriously though this movie lacked a few things. While having plenty of cameos and famous people it did not have any of the following:

1. Funny Things 2. A Plot Line 3. Anything that made sense 4. Understandable lines 5. A reason to exist

Save yourself now. Run. Before its too late.
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Completely unexpected
jimbob2981 December 2001
Having seen the trailer and thought 'doesn't look very good', I decided to see it anyway since I have a membership that enables me to see as many films as I want.

The film totally surpassed my expectations. Having recently decided that Jeepers Creepers and The Animal were two of the worst films I've ever seen I was completely unprepared for what I was about to see. This is now only second to Showgirls for The Worst Movie Ever Made.

How is it possible for the man who was hilarious in a five minute appearance in Friends and equally brilliant in There's Something About Mary, Mystery Men and Meet The Parents take a giant step backwards create such a disastrously bad film? It failed to even raise a faint smile on my face for the entire 90 minutes.

What I can't believe are the ones who have given it good ratings. Are they mad? They're probably the same people who think Showgirls is a brilliant American satire. I was surrounding by people laughing out loud and (this is no lie) applauding some of the jokes. I'm disappointed that it's not possible to give a lower rating than 1.

Easily the worst film I've seen in a cinema (I saw Showgirls on TV). Even though I didn't pay to see it, I still demanded my money back at the end. Don't watch it. Ever. You'll thank me in the end.

By the way, I thought The Cable Guy was very funny.

I still can't believe they were applauding...
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