We hope everyone had a great Christmas and we want to wish everyone a Happy New Year. This week we’ll be tackling Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, sequel to 2004’s Anchorman: Legend of Ron Burgundy. Directed by Adam McKay and starring Will Ferrell, Steve Carell, Paul Rudd, and Christina Applegate, it is rated PG-13 for sexual content, drug use, language and comic violence.
After leaving San Diego for New York, Ron Burgundy (Ferrell) and his wife, Veronica Corningstone (Applegate), lead great lives with their son Walter. However, when the boss (cameo by Harrison Ford) of the WBC decides to fire Ron and promote Veronica, Ron leaves his family and moves back to San Diego. He struggles for months on end until he is offered a job at the new 24 hours a day news channel. After accepting the job and getting his news crew, Brian Fantanta (Rudd), Champ Kind (David Koechner), and Brick Tamland (Carell), back together, Ron changes broadcasting history forever, gaining immortal fame with this new job in New York. However, Ron encounters various problems he must overcome: his new rival Jack Lime (James Mardsen), a burning desire to beat Veronica, and his inability to connect with his son.
7 out of 10
Rating comedy movies such as this one is slightly different than rating a regular film. Judging it as a regular film is different than judging it as a comedy film. The rating I gave above is a rating of this film as a movie. However, in terms of a comedy, I would give this film a 9 or so. I did exactly what I wanted to do: laugh my ass off.
Whether or not you liked this movie may be heavily based on what you expected. If you expected a witty, smartly written movie, you may be slightly disappointed. If you were expecting a movie similar to the first one, you also may have been slightly disappointed. But if you just expected to laugh, then you’d definitely be pleased. Anchorman 2 is distinctly different than it’s predecessor. It is (somehow) more over the top, goofier, and stupider. It’s hard to hit it exactly the nose, but the tone felt different. The story and the characters all had a different feel to them. This wasn’t a problem for me, but if you are someone who loved the first movie for that tone, then the change might be a bit of a bummer for you.
But as I said earlier, I laughed my ass off. This movie was so funny because of few things. 1) The acting and 2) The ridiculousness. You may ask how I can call this necessarily good acting, and that’s completely understandable. The cast won’t be winning any awards for their performances. Not to be cliched, but all these actors really become their character. Ferrell, Carell, Rudd, and Koechner really are a team and their actions and personalities are so whacky and really freaking hilarious.
The over-the-topness of it all also contributes to the hilarity of it all. The dialogue and the actions all tend to be… just weird, really. My favorite character is Brick Tamland, just because of how odd he is. The stuff that he says is so random, and so stupid, and as a result, it’s just so funny. I hope most of you remember “I love lamp” from the first film… Golden. Brick’s character is used even more prominently in this film, and it really works.
Another over the top, ridiculous scene is the fight scene towards the very end, when many A-List actors (Tina Fey, Sacha Baron Cohen, Liam Neeson) make cameos and at that point, it’s hard to figure out what is going on (but it’s still hilarious!!!). During this scene, I remembered asking myself what the hell I was watching. After digesting it, I’m still not sure, but all I know is that it was definitely one of the more entertaining films I’ve seen.
In the end, I’m giving it a 7 based on how it is as a film. It’s hardly a film that appeals to everyone, and it’s a style of comedy that you really have to be okay with in order to like the film. If you don’t like random humor, then this is not the film for you. Personally, I found it to be one of the funnier movies of the year and something that I really enjoyed watching.
8 out of 10
Comedy’s a pretty tough thing to do.
So far, I think this blog has really gone over drama and action. When making both of these types of these films, you’re usually playing one note (That’s certainly not terribly easy either). Comedy, however, has about a billion subtypes you can go into, each of which have their own fans and haters.
Anchorman, thankfully, played to a lot of those types. It’s a random, witty, and satirical masterpiece that eased its way from one-liner to one-liner thus weaving the entire movie into one ball of comedic quotables. In middle school, I couldn’t go a couple of months without hearing somebody, beaming with originality, saying “Stay classy ______” on the morning show. Aside from that, Anchorman doesn’t really have a plot. In fact, I don’t think I could give you a completely accurate summary whatsoever. And that’s what makes it so great.
Comedy sequels, to say the least, do not have that hot of a track record. Typically, they turn out to be a re-tread of old jokes (That may have not been that funny in the first place) that the writers think are original just because more money was injected into them and they were “cranked up to eleven”.
Anchorman 2, however, takes a different direction than its predecessor in that it has a bit more of a plot (Emphasis on the “a bit” here) and it extentuates some of its characters. It sacrifices some of its talent with one-liners for some more broad and generally direct jokes (To be honest, I can’t quite quote that much off-hand).
But, to me, it was really worth it. It was an extremely satisfying tackle of 24-hour news (Without spoiling, Burgundy has some ideas which resemble the strategies of a few certain networks) coupled with a barrage of randomness and visual gags that I really appreciated.
If you are not into that type of humor in the first place (This seems like a poor choice for you then, doesn’t it?) then its going to be a long, tortuous ride for you. Thankfully, there may be enough zingers to keep you interested.
But whether you like it or you don’t, you must admire that it is trying something new. Anchorman barely references or echoes any of the jokes from the first and, if anything, that helps raise it to the level of the original. It had enough material from its predecessor that it could have Hangover 2’d this entire film but this was in no way lazy endeavor.
Rotten Tomatoes: 75%