Monday, 23 December 2013

Zoolander (2001)

This was the first film to really introduce me to Will Ferrell back in the day, its hard to think when this film came out he wasn't a big name star. Twas also the first time I saw Ben Stiller's dad on the big screen, or anywhere really, I hadn't yet discovered the joys of 'The King of Queens'.

This entire film plays out like an early Sacha Baron Cohen flick ('Bruno') but much much tamer. A very deliberate spoof and parody of the fashion/model world that is grotesque, bloated, narcissistic and embarrassing. Alongside Stiller and Owen Wilson is fellow frat pack member Vince Vaughn in an early cameo role and many many other big name stars hamming it up...or so we're led to believe.

Of course this being a film about modelling and fashion there has to be real patriots of this exclusive world involved, and there are plenty. All the big glamorous names you can think of that are connected to this vomit inducing scene are hauled out in front of the camera to show us their parody acting chops. Thing is I'm not entirely sure some of them understood they were being put in a film, I highly doubt they caught on that their lives were being poked fun at (mocked) and they were contributing towards the laughs. Just another day in the glitzy limelight for them.

I wouldn't say the humour was particularly clever, witty or sharp. Its most definitely amusing seeing Stiller and Wilson going overboard as two self obsessed male models, the clip montages at the award ceremony, their own unique dialect and visual expressions plus the 'walk off'...some great mockery going on there. Unfortunately it doesn't quite hold up for the run time in my opinion, the early golden moments dry up quickly as do the ideas.

The plot is daft of course but that doesn't matter really, its just a chance to have a pop at this ridiculous industry, maybe open some insider eyes perhaps. It all feels like your typical SNL sketch that has been stretched out but a little better than their usual fare. Its all very predictable childish and silly but that's the idea so there's no need to think into it. The only good thing about the film for me was the main lead duo and their excellent self indulgent portrayals, everything else is so so.

I totally forgot how hot Jovovich is in this film with her strict dominatrix attire, plus talk about a desperate attempt to kick start your career Billy Zane! Why exactly are you in this?