News Flash: Anchorman 2 Full of Laughs
- Wednesday, December 18, 2013
Release Date: December 18, 2013
Rating: PG-13 for crude and sexual content, drug use, language and comic violence
Run Time: 119 min.
Director: Adam McKay
Cast: Will Ferrell, Christina Applegate, Steve Carell, Paul Rudd, David Koechner, James Marsden, Harrison Ford, Kristin Wiig, Greg Kinnear, Dylan Baker, Josh Lawson
This just in: Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues starring Will Ferrell is surprisingly funny. Surprising because much of the time a little of Ferrell's brand of humor can go a long way, often tipping into tiresome sexual jokes or strained, repetitive attempts to milk a gag that didn't work the first time, ala the films of Judd Apatow (whose production company backed Anchorman 2).
So it's nice to report that the sequel to 2004's Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy is, for the most part, a goofy, unserious film that generates laugh after laugh. It doesn't sidestep cheap, easy jokes; it is rated PG-13 (see "Rating" above and "Cautions" below), but it stops well short of the raunch-fests that pass for movie comedies today. It also manages to keep the giggles coming for its nearly two-hour running time.
Ron Burgundy (Ferrell) enters the 1980s with hopes that he'll land the national news anchor gig held for decades by Mack Harken (Harrison Ford, 42). Instead, that plum job goes to Burgundy's partner both on and off the air, Veronica Corningstone (Christina Applegate, Hall Pass). Burgundy's years of broadcasting—marked by outrageous, unprofessional outbursts—are rewarded not with promotion but with termination. The strain of Veronica's promotion and Ron's firing proves too much for the duo's marriage, which ends in a fit of professional jealousy.
Down but not out, Ron is approached by a producer about anchoring an upstart 24-hour news channel. Soon Ron has gathered old colleagues—sportscaster Champ Kind (David Koechner, Semi-Pro), reporter Brian Fantana (Paul Rudd, Prince Avalanche) and weatherman Brick Tamland (Steve Carell, The Way, Way Back)—to bring the news to a new audience. Only after they all relocate to New York to work for the new network do they learn that their audience will be smaller than they thought: they'll be broadcasting during the graveyard shift, leaving the primetime reporting to star anchor Jack Lime (James Marsden, Enchanted).
In an attempt to increase his shift's meager audience, Burgundy goes off-script to bring viewers "what they want" rather than what they need, which raises the ire of his producer and the head of the network. The approach proves a sensation. Extreme weather, multiple animal stories... the public can't get enough of Burgundy, who becomes the fledgling network's ratings star.
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