Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues (Super-Sized Version)
By Jon Rutledge
The theatrical version of Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues didn't quite live up to the expectations created by the iconic original. When I saw that there was a Super-Sized Version on Netflix, I thought "alright I can see a director's cut."
I was so incredibility unprepared for what I saw.
This version is a completely different film. It has the same story framework, but 95% of the jokes and interactions are completely different. This edition of Anchorman 2 essentially lets the camera run, giving these very talented people free reign with their attempts at making us laugh and cringe. Hell, they even include a musical number.
The down side of all of this freedom is if you didn't care for the original theatrical version, like me, you are not going to like this new content any better. However, if you are a fan, you need to make time and see this because it's a whole new ride.
Ron Burgundy (Will Ferrell) and his wife, Veronica (Christina Applegate) are working in New York for a local news channel. The main anchorman, Mack Tannen (Harrison Ford), is retiring and he wants Veronica to take over his spot (and in the same breath, fires Ron). Ron is crushed and is at the end of his rope when Freddie (Dylan Baker) offers Ron a spot on this new venture: the first ever 24 hour news network.
Ron gets his team back together: Brian, Brick, and Champ (Paul Rudd, Steve Carell and David Koechner). They set the groundwork for news that tells people what they want to hear as opposed to being informative. We see Ron rise to the height of stardom and lose it all while learning a valuable life lesson.
There were one or two really good genuine laugh-out-loud moments here, but you need to wade through quite a lot of crude, harsh, humor in order to get to those few comedic gems. The racist humor and the embarrassing situations that Ron gets himself into are often hard to watch.
The highlight of Anchorman 2 is watching the performers and their ability to play off one another, they have a knack for off colour jokes and irreverent humor.
Underneath the cheap gags, there's actually some biting satire on offer as it lampoons the birth of the modern news machine that panders to the audiences for ratings and - in doing so - highlights all of the bad things about modern news networks. There is a real undercurrent of admonishment for the sensationalist news networks.
Aside from being a super-sized cut of the film, the overall story seems to be too long. It tends to meander and play in areas that were cut from the theatrical version for good reason. It's hard for a filmmaker to cut some of the parts that he feels the most connected to. You never want to lower the axe on some of your dearest scenes... but perhaps Adam McKay could have used a LITTLE more axe.
Sequels of good moves have a lot to live up to. A bad movie that gets a sequel has some room to grow. When there is a sequel to an average movie it has to at least match the original. This one measures up to the low standard the original set. This labour of love is worth the look if this is
your cup of tea, or as this movie states, your hot frothy cup of horse piss.
Conclusion: Movie: 40%