Critics' Corner: Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues

Will Ferrell's unprecedented run of promotion before the release of "Anchorman 2" was maybe not a reflexion of what "Anchorman 2" was, but what it was striving to be; epic comedy. He was everywhere, in character; and what an entertaining character Ron Burgundy turned out to be. The self-centered and deviously career-minded news journalist poked fun at the news business back in 2004 and the true success of "Anchorman" was not realized until the movie actually was released on video. So, producer Judd Apatow was determined to deliver some form of epicness to the Anchorman reboot.

It was this attempt at epicness though, in my opinion, that left the movie less than it could have been. The early minutes of "Anchorman 2" are crafted well and the comedy is frequently side-splitting with an occasional dud. It is the dawn of the 24-hour news network and the very attempt at such a thing is drawing eye-rolls and hilarity from most of the 30-minute news world. So who better to make this 24-hour news network idea work, but Ron Burgundy and his team of dimwits including Brick (Steve Carrell), Champ (Tipton's own David Koechner) and Fantana (Paul Rudd).

At some point though, the crafty gimmicks and effective jokes deteriorate into the overzealously bizarre. The story that was having so much success making intelligent hilarious fun of the way our world is over-saturated with news, opinion and some sort of weird place in-between, sort of got whacked in the head just like Ron Burgundy. At some point, it was like the writers ran out of crafty intelligent jokes and spent the final part of the film seeing how bizarre and over-the-top they could push it. Instead of delivering wit, they became obsessed with delivering epic.

On top of trying to be epic, they got lazy, hammering the same gag time after time, over and over. Not to give any spoilers, but we get the hint, he doesn't know what he has in his hand and he can't feel that it isn't what he thinks it is. Even Brick's random unrelated comments got tiresome toward the end because it doesn't take much to come up with random comments, it's the crafty ones that require skill. Finally, the creators poured dozens of cameos, bizarreness and future guns into a finale that had me wondering how long the movie was and how much more was left.

"Anchorman 2" is not without tremendous writing and tremendous jokes that are crafty and bordering great satire, but it is also troubled with lazy jokes and monotonous silliness that gets old fast and just keeps happening over and over. Almost the entire final third of the film is like that friend that tells you an unfunny joke and you don't laugh so he tells you it again, and again, and again and it never gets better and you eventually check your watch and finally leave.