Sunday, February 28, 2016

Movie Review: ZOOLANDER 2

ZOOLANDER IS BACK.....and there's a lot to ponder.

The long-awaited follow-up to the hilarious 2001 comedy, Zoolander, is finally here and I had a great time reconnecting with these characters.  Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson fell back into their roles as if they had just made the first film, and Will Ferrell was hilarious as always.  It was great spending another 100 minutes in this world, with these characters, seeing where they are now, and what happened over the last 15 years.  However, the film isn't without flaws.

Zoolander 2 takes us back into the world of Derek and Hansel, 15 years after the end of the first film.  We get a really nice montage to catch us up with what has happened since we last saw these guys, and a lot has happened.  The film reunites the two former male models, who have been in seclusion for years, and are pulled back into the world of modeling, only to discover they are the targets of another nefarious scheme by fashion mogul-turned-criminal, Jacobim Mugatu.  They must do whatever it takes to stop Mugatu, at any cost.

Returning as writer/director for the film is Derek Zoolander himself, Ben Stiller.  It's been three years since Stiller last directed a film (the amazingly done The Secret Life of Walter Mitty) and 8 years since he last wrote a movie (2008's Tropic Thunder), but he managed to make this one feel just like it should, exploring the "fish out of water" motif, while creating a different and interesting crisis for the characters. Some of the dialogue was a bit forced, causing several jokes to fall flat, but I still found myself laughing more often than not and was never bored, and that's what I really care about when watching a comedy.

Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson returned to the characters they made famous, former male models Derek Zoolander and Hansel.  Their chemistry was as evident in this film as it was in the original and it seemed like they has a great time making this film and jumping back into these characters.  We also saw the return of Zoolander and Hansel's archnemesis, Jacobim Mugatu, played by Will Ferrell.  Ferrell, who was one of my favorite parts of the first, managed to bring life back to this character, like no one else could.  This was the Mugatu that I remembered and I loved it.

The boys were joined by several other returning characters and a few new ones as well.  Joining Zoolander and Hansel on their mission to stop Mugatu is Valentina Valencia (played by Penelope Cruz), head of the Fashion Division of Interpol (aka The Fashion Police).  Penelope Cruz is gorgeous as always and brings a nice contrast to these guys, just like Christine Taylor did in the original.  We also get returning appearances from Billy Zane, Milla Jovovich, Christine Taylor, Justin Theroux, Nathan Lee Graham, and Jerry Stiller.

Just like its predecessor, Zoolander 2 is full of celebrity cameos, some small, some much bigger.  Some of the most notable appearances were Kristen Wiig as new fashion mogul Alexanya Atoz, who works with Mugatu in his plot against Zoolander, Justin Bieber (who's seen in the trailers), Kiefer Sutherland, Susan Boyle, Fred Armisen, Andy Dick, Benedict Cumberbatch (in a surprising and hilarious role), Olivia Munn, Skrillex, Christina Hendricks, Ariana Grande, John Malkovich, and many, many more that will make for fun surprises.

As I said, I really did enjoy this film, getting to spend time, once again, with these characters, but it did have its problems.  The first act seemed like it was trying a bit too hard to bring the nostalgia of the original back, causing several jokes to fall flat.  As the film went on, though, it managed to gain its own identity, separating it from the first while making it obvious that it's definitely a follow-up, and by the third act I found myself really enjoying the film and seeing the return of Magnum was great.  

If you loved the first film, I would definitely recommend checking out the sequel, just don't expect it to be as good as the original.  Just take it for what it is and you should have a good time.

The Merc's Score: 6.5/10

Make sure to check us out and like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for all of our reviews, news, trailers, and much, much more!!!

No comments:

Post a Comment