Zoolander 2

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Zoolander 2

There’s a lot to like about Zoolander 2. For one thing, rarely has there been a feature-length comedy so devoted to the comedy potential of people pulling silly faces, which might sound like damning with faint praise but face facts: face pulling can be really funny if done right.

Pretty much everyone from the first film is back (that’s good) in a plot that’s a knock-off of the Dan Brown school of “chosen one” style conspiracy thrillers (that’s bad, because the convoluted plot means there are a bunch of clunky “quick, to the next scene!” moments). It takes a long time to get started too, though the opening scenes – including a very funny intro and an enjoyably ridiculous series of news stories to bring the characters up to today – are good stuff.

The trouble is that once male model turned recluse Derek Zoolander (director Ben Stiller), “hideously scarred” rival Hansel (Owen Wilson) and Interpol Fashion Division cop Valentina (Penelope Cruz) are all roughly the same “dumb but good-looking” character, so it’s not until other characters step up in the second half that we get some variety in the jokes. Inconsistency is part of the deal with this kind of comedy: there’s enough big laughs here to make it worth your while.