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Anchorman 2 broadcasts from lame lane

Paul Peterson

Paul Peterson

So, the legend of Ron Burgandy continues.
My concern about this movie started when they announced that there was going to be an Anchorman 2 on the Conan O’Brien show and none of the other actors knew anything about it. I’m not sure why that seemed like a bad thing but normally there’s some buzz around and the originals are invited to be part of the script process. My concern grew when I saw how hard they were hyping it.

Burgandy and company were everywhere from CNN which fit, to ESPN, which also fit, to CTV morning. Ok there’s a very clever Canadian content that’s worth promoting, but I swear they also did the North Shore news, Wiarton Weather and Hanover tonight.
It smacked of desperation.

I saw Paul Rudd on Conan, who talked about this hilarious improvised part of the film and then they played the clip.
So I went into the film lowering my expectations to the subterranean level.
Good plan.
Our story so far.
Its been awhile since the original and the years haven’t been kind. Ron has been fired at the station while his wife Veronica has been promoted to his old job. He’s a drunk working at Sea World as their announcer.
I chuckled at that.
Offered a bite at the big apple to run the midnight shift at the all new all news Global Network News Ron puts the team back together to start giving people “the news they want to hear”.
So Brian Champ and Brick join their feckless leader in his quest to read news with salon quality hair.
The premise is funny.
The film is uneven.
It’s raunchier than the original.
There are a lot of sexual references which isn’t the end of the world but it wears thin early on.
Ron’s boss at GNN is a black woman named Linda which opens up a world of politically incorrect jokes that reminded me of the whole Mole routine in Goldmember.
Except in Goldmember, it seemed a lot funnier.
There’s some decent satire.
Certainly the programming decisions in filling the 24 hour news cycle are perfect grounds for poking fun at that world. It’s the cotton candy version of Network.
At times it dissolves into the sublime.

The obligatory fight scene between their warring news rivals is unwatchable to me and there are lots of times when I had to avert my eyes. Not really a good thing when you’re watching a movie.
At the end of the day, it’s an ok movie to fill a few hours but there’s a fine line between stupid funny and stupid lame and Anchorman 2 swerves cleanly into the lame lane like a runaway RV full of bowling balls and scorpions in aquariums.
You do the math.

As always, other opinions are welcome, but wrong. That’s it for this week. The cheque’s in the mail and I’m outta here. Paul.

Filed Under: News from Everywhere ElsePaul Peterson


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