Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues (2013)

Director: Adam McKay

Writers: Adam McKay, Will Ferrell

Composers: Andrew Feltenstein, John Nau

Starring: Will Ferrell, Paul Rudd, Steve Carell, David Koechner, Christina Applegate, Kristen Wiig, Harrison Ford, James Marsden, Meagan Good, Dylan Baker, Josh Lawson, Judah Nelson, Greg Kinnear

More info: IMDb

Tagline: It's Kind of a Big Deal

Plot: With the 70's behind him, San Diego's top rated newsman, Ron Burgundy (Ferrell), returns to the news desk in "Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues." Also back for more are Ron's co-anchor and wife, Veronica Corningstone (Applegate), weather man Brick Tamland (Carell), man on the street Brian Fantana (Rudd) and sports guy Champ Kind (Koechner) - All of whom won't make it easy to stay classy...while taking the nation's first 24-hour news channel by storm.

My rating: 6/10

Will I watch it again? No.

I'm not a big Will Ferrell fan but I did see the first film in the theaters 9 years ago and just recently I watched it for the second time. It didn't hold up as well but it still had a half dozen or so great belly laughs.  Sadly, the sequel does not.  I laughed a few times but not hard and when I did it was just because of the silliness of it all.  It's two hours long which is easily 20-30 minutes too long.  There is a big chunk where Ron loses his sight and he's moved into a lighthouse.  I didn't laugh once.  It's a drag on the rest of the picture.  I really liked the story and the era that it takes place in.  They have a lot of fun with the emergence of cable news and the 24 hour news cycle.  There's some funny and clever shit.  The problem is some of the comedy set pieces that are there for the sake of laughs (or lack of) and they either barely further the story or not at all. I'm all for a scene existing just for the sake of being funny, regardless if it propels the plot, but it hurts when there's not a laugh in sight.  Like everything, comedy is subjective and for every time I didn't chuckle or guffaw, there were a dozen others in the theater that were.  Some of the best moments occur with the cameos with the different news teams in the park that meet for a big fight.  Scan the IMDb credits for the extensive list.  That was probably the best part.  Harrison Ford, Liam Neeson, John C. Reilly as the ghost of General Sherman, Sacha Baron Cohen, Jim Carrey, etc.  There are some truly funny bits in this picture but they consume about 20 minutes out of two hours.  It's a big missed opportunity.  Maybe I'm really tired of Ferrell's one note roles.  I'm just not digging on these idiot characters that he and others like him (Ben Stiller, etc) are the basis for a lifelong career in movies.  Either that or I'm not smoking enough reefers.

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