Review: Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues
Even though my boyfriend commonly jokes, "Which movie are you going to make me read tonight?", my arthouse leanings are generally no match for Will Ferrell. Sometimes all I want to do is turn my mind off for a few hours and laugh at pure idiocy. If Ferrell is the star of a movie, I'm pretty much a sucker for it. When I was offered the chance to see and review Anchorman 2, I leapt at the opportunity, much to the chagrin of said boyfriend.
It's been almost a decade since we first met Ron Burgundy. Early in this long-awaited sequel, Ron and his wife Victoria (Christina Applegate) split up after she is offered a network anchor position instead of him. After hitting rock bottom, Ron is approached by an upstart network called GNN that's preparing to launch a 24-hour news channel. He goes on a cross-country trip to put his old news team back together for GNN, but they become disheartened to learn that they're relegated to a 2-5 am shift. After a confrontation with GNN's primetime anchor Jack Lime (James Marsden), Ron makes a bet and eventually becomes the network's most successful anchor, avoiding actual news and filling his time slot with animal stories and live car chases.
The idea for the sequel became clear: director Adam McKay was quoted in a recent interview as saying, "Oh, that time when news started to go downhill a little bit -- what if it was all Ron Burgundy's fault?" So Anchorman 2 is a prescient satire, but is it funny? I guess that depends on your tolerance. If you love the first movie, you aren't going to be disappointed here. Filled with go-for-broke comedy that is completely absurd and often improvised, the biggest problem here is that it goes on way too long and has no idea how to end. When the end credits started to roll, I couldn't help but feel a little cheated by what I felt was a truly dumb final scene, but then I realized that my cheeks hurt from laughing so hard.
After weeks of immersing myself in dour foreign films and other overly dramatic awards-season fare, Anchorman 2 was exactly what I needed to cleanse my palate. It's not going to earn any new fans and many may find it to be one of the dumbest things they've ever seen, but thinking about a few of the scenes now is still making me giggle several days later. There's probably not much rewatchability here, but I'm not sure I could've asked for anything more.