The 25 Greatest Jewish Characters in Movies

22. Jerry Stiller as Maury Ballstein in Zoolander 2001

Notable Jewish Moment: His name is "Ballstein," possibly the funniest fake Jewish name ever. But also, he spends the entire movie with exposed chest-hair, on top of which is a Star of David peeking out.
Classic Quote: "I got a prostate the size of a honeydew and a headful of bad memories. It's time to set the record straight.'"

Yes, that's Ben Stiller's father, playing the father of Derek Zoolander, who's played by Ben Stiller. The two on screen together make for wonderful moments of comic brilliance, but compared with his son's one-note character, it's Maury Ballstein—the ass-grabbing, sandwich-chomping owner of Balls Models—who steals the show as the heart of the film, the mentor to Zoolander who eventually helps save the day.

Without Ballstein as the most human, relatable, and likely of characters, Zoolander might not have had enough gravity to become the cult-classic comedy and perfect send-up of high fashion that we know it as today.

blog comments powered by Disqus