by Sasha Glenn
“Zoolander 2” picks up just a couple days after the first film left off. Staying true to the story line, Zoolander and Hansel are as vapid as ever and have retreated to lives in exile after the school for children who couldn’t read good (or whatever) collapsed due to shoddy construction. With their dreams dashed, both models are licking their wounds when they are summoned back into the world of fashion by a disgustingly beautiful fashionista with the Botox of the gods, Alexanya Ato (Kristen Wiig). With a face that can hardly move Ato is unsettlingly inviting.
For Zoolander and Hansel, the world they once knew has been taken over by today’s most annoying pop stars and what is now known as – “mainstream hipster society.”
Reminiscent of the “Austin Powers” series, Penelope Cruz leads a high speed action-spy adventure (cheesy as it may sound, it’s pretty great) as Melanie Valentina, working for Interpol “fashion division.” Cruz sets out to discover who has been killing Hollywood’s famous faces following Bieber’s tragic, and very graphic, death.
Inadvertently, due to Zoolander’s irresistible good looks, Cruz embarks on a mission to help him reunite with his estranged son and defeat Mugatu (Will Ferrell). The film is exactly what you would expect following the first “Zoolander.” It’s short, funny, ridiculous, and yet the sequel is surprisingly relevant.
The incorporation of an androgynous character named All played by Benedict Cumberbatch steps dangerously close to the edge of what is acceptable amongst the film’s own likely audience of hipster pc’rs.
Surprise appearances are actually part of what makes this sequel pretty great, yet they don’t take over and the ridiculous storyline somehow remains a coherent.
The best appearance of all, and most out of place, is that of Neil deGrasse Tyson himself. Of course, as a beautiful person, Zoolander’s journey is one of epic spiritual proportions in his own mind, so somehow a physicist fits in quite nicely.
Delivering exactly what it advertises, I give “Zoolander 2” 3.5 out of 5 stars.
Second Review By Jennifer Gomez
The waiting is over! Blue Steel and Magnum are back! After 15 years, the legendary Derek Zoolander (Ben Stiller) and his estranged friend and ex-rival Hansel (Owen Wilson) come back to the big screen, to show us how to be really, really, really ridiculously good-looking.
At the end of the first movie, Zoolander retired from modeling to help others, building the Center for Kids Who Can’t Read Good and Wanna Learn to Do Other Stuff Good Too. Unfortunately the building collapsed shortly after it was built, killing Matilda, separating our hero from their young son Derek Jr, and forcing Hansel to quit modeling after being disfigured during the accident. While Hansel spent his days in the arid dunes of Malibu wearing a gold mask, Zoolander went into self-imposed exile to the snowy wilds of “extremely northern New Jersey” only wanting to be miserable and forgotten.
In the first 5 minutes of the movie we have Justin Bieber, as himself, being chased through the streets of Rome for unknown reasons and gunned down in front of Sting Villa, but not before he posts his last selfie. Not surprisingly, everyone in the theater applauded his demise
But Bieber is just the latest in a list of celebrities who have been killed under mysterious circumstances. But what all of the victims have in common is the selfie sent before their death.
These murders are under investigation by Valentina Valencia (Penelope Cruz) a special agent with the Interpol’s Global Fashion Division who, by the way, looks amazing in that red leather jumpsuit.
Valencia is trying to find out if the selfies before the murders have any meaning and if they are connected in any way, Unfortunately, no one has seen Zoolander in years and Valentina believes he is the only one able to solve this mystery.
Back to the U.S, Billy Zane (once again playing himself) tracks down Zoolander and Hansel to coerce them back into the world capital of high fashion: Rome. There they will be the honored guests to appear on the runway for Alexanya Atoz (Kristen Wiig). When they get to Rome they are welcomed for Don Atari (Kyle Mooney) a millennial fashion designer whose main star is a gender-ambivalent model named All, the biggest supermodel in the all world, played in a hilariously creepy way by Benedict Cumberbatch. During the trip our heroes get involved with the Interpol’s Global Fashion Division to help solve the recent murders.
This is where Mugatu (Will Ferrell) the eccentric and evil fashion designer who loves cappuccinos; escaped jail (fashion jail) for a final confrontation with our heroes where every designer you’ve heard appears.
It is really impressive the amount of music artists, celebrities and fashion designers that Ben Stiller gets to appears in this film. There are some really clever jokes and a lot of moments when you’ll laugh out loud, although it feels like some of the jokes would’ve being funnier maybe a year or six months ago. But in general I enjoyed this sequel; maybe because I saw the first one the night before the screening so all the jokes and the characters were fresh in my mind. But for somebody that hasn’t seen the film in 15 years, I think they may not enjoy it as much. Personally, I’m not a fan of Will Ferrell myself, because I feel he plays the same role in every movie, except of course for Jacobim Mugatu. I really enjoyed the evil, egocentric fashion designer mastermind. So long story short, just relax and enjoy a funny film.
3.5 out of 5