There are smart dramatic comedies such as The Martian. There are comedies that try too hard and fall flat. I’m looking at you Get Hard. And there are comedy sequels that have overstayed their welcome. This list is long: Little Fockers, the Scary Movie series, anything involving Jim Carrey, post-Bevery Hills Cop Eddie Murphy, etc.
Zoolander 2 veers dangerously into the final category, rehashing almost every joke from the first film but louder and more flamboyantly, and repeats new punchlines over and over again. Yet somehow it works, probably because it doesn’t try too hard, take itself too seriously or pretends to be something it’s not.
The cameos help. The Justin Bieber death scene at the start of the film is worth the ticket price itself, and fashion luminaries – folks such as Anna Wintour, Marc Jacobs and Tommy Hilfiger – aren’t afraid of poking a bit of fun at themselves for the benefit of the audience. Watch out for Benedict Cumberbatch’s appearance. His turn as a gender-fluid muse is a masterstroke and makes you realise how talented this British actor is. Even Neil DeGrasse Tyson shows up. On a rooftop, no less, waxing philosophical questions.
The jokes come fast and furious, and the plot is at once stupid and ingenious, if that’s even possible. But if you follow the fashion and modelling industry at all, you have to see the film. The first film was a biting parody of the fashion industry. Zoolander 2 somehow is parodying itself, and that’s not easy.
Zoolander 2 is showing now in cinemas islandwide