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Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues

Anchorman 2 Teaser Poster.jpg“Diluted” is the first word that comes to mind as I stepped out of the theater after seeing Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues.  The jokes are tired, recycled, and even stolen from other comedy classics.  My only hope is that the legend dies and never shows its ugly head for a third act.

Will Ferrell and the gang are back as they attempt to take New York City, and a new 24 hour news network GNN, by storm.  Burgundy and his misfits are seen as a joke in the news world, but someone has to run that 2am-5am slot, and they’ll tackle it with everything they’ve got.  Burgundy finds himself at odds with another anchor on the network, up and comer Jack Lime, the prime-time anchor on GNN news.  Burgundy knows that his team can put up better ratings than Lime and challenges him to a ratings battle, in the hopes that he’ll be on top of the news world once again.

Ferrell is doing his thing as always, but the big misses here are Carell’s character Brick, David Koechner as Champ, and really the mis-fire of Christina Applegate as Veronica Corningstone.  Applegate and how her character had to face off versus the guys in the first film, was one of the reason’s why Anchorman was so hilarious.  You get none of that here, and Brick and Champ are poorly written as well.  Paul Rudd may be the one saving grace of the film.  He has a few lines that I was chuckling at a day later, and is always great in everything he does.

The last hour of the film is excruciating to sit through, and is just a reason for everyone and their mother to make a cameo appearance and be loud and obnoxious.  A never-ending bad joke that had me wanting to walk out of the theater.  That’s the problem with Anchorman 2.  There’s too many scenes, story-arcs, and character intro’s that just don’t make sense, and while that can sometimes be funny, it’s just annoying here.

I had high hopes for the film just because of how good the original was, and also because of Adam McKay’s track record as a director.  He’s made some really outstanding films beginning with the first Anchorman, the vastly underrated Adventureland and The Other Guys, and of course the now classic Step Brothers.  Unfortunately he’s just going through the motions here, and working with a very weak script in the process.

I was even more aware of how tired the film seemed as I got back to my hotel room that same evening.  Anchorman happened to be on TBS and I found myself watching the whole thing, laughing at jokes that still seemed fresh 10 years later.  It also happened to be on an edited cable channel with commercials, and I still found it funnier than the sequel.  Anchorman 2 has none of the jokes the original has, or I should say it does have some of the jokes they’re just recycled in a less funny fashion.  Skip it.

Grade: C-