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Dan the Man's Movie Reviews

All my aimless thoughts, ideas, and ramblings, all packed into one site!

Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004)


If only the world of journalism was this cut-throat, or entertaining to be around.

Everybody, meet San Diego’s top news anchor Ron Burgundy (Will Ferrell) and come and see how good he looks. Yeah, Ron’s a bit of a fool of himself and definitely thinks he’s the greatest thing to come around since sliced bread, however, he isn’t alone. He has a fellow band of trusted and worthy reporters that hang around him and give him a lending hand whenever he needs it. Together, they work as a team and together, they’ve been practically #1 in the ratings, week-after-week. And everything seems to be going all fine and dandy, up until an inspired and determined female reporter, Veronice Corningstone (Christina Applegate), shows up and decides that it’s her turn to shine and become the first ever female newscaster. Mostly everybody scoffs at this idea, but once she proves them wrong and that she’s more than capable of telling the news and still having rather large, exquisite breasts, then the newscast team evolves and work with what they have, which also means that Ron’s out of a job. And to make matters even worse, Ron’s all alone and without his biggest and best buddy, BAXTER!!

Basically, plot does not matter at all with this movie. It’s only purpose is to actually move it from one outrageous, over-the-top joke to the next and while that would usually seek, kill and destroy any comedy out there, it does not do that to this one. Sole reason? It’s a dumb movie that knows it’s dumb and makes no apologies for it whatsoever. You sort of have to expect that going in, and if you don’t, then I don’t know what to say, you might be screwed over. Although, even to this day, it’s still hard to find somebody that doesn’t at least “like” this movie, let alone adore the hell out of it.

How every blog expresses their sense of everlasting joy after receiving some life-changing news.

How every blog expresses their sense of everlasting joy after receiving some life-changing news.

It’s going to be hard to write an honest-to-God, non-rambling-mess-of-a-review on this so if I do run into a couple of tangents along the way before reaching my usual “Consensus” part of the review, I do apologize.

Anyway, with this movie, you have to know what to expect, solely on knowing Will Ferrell’s brand of comedy. It’s going to be loud, crude, rude, stupid and fun for everybody involved, which also means you yourself, the viewer. That’s why it doesn’t matter how many times you see this movie, whether you stumble upon it on television or decide to give it a re-watch to hype up the second movie (now who would want to do that?), it’s always a rip-roaring, gut-busting and funny-as-eff watch. Sometimes, you may even have to watch it alone, mainly because you’ll be heckling so loud, you don’t want to disrupt all of the others around you and whatever uneventful they may be doing that doesn’t concern watching Anchorman (we also call them “losers”). That’s what I did, and I still had a ball.

However, I could go on and on about how funny this movie is, but to really pin-point down exactly what it is that I feel is so funny, I just have to get on about it with the cast because, if you think about it, they’re really the ones holding this fort down. Sure, I bet some of the lines of dialogue were scripted, but only the parts that mattered in order to move the story along from one scene to the next. Instead, half of this dialogue feels, and probably was, more ad-libbed than anything else. With movies where half of their dialogue comes from somebody’s improv, it usually can, once again, seek, kill and destroy any comedy, but, once again, not this one. And certainly not with this cast of funny and deranged comedic-geniuses.

Will Ferrell was the one who got this whole gang/movie together and it makes sense why: He’s easily the best part of it all, which is not an easy thing to just state. The reason why Ferrell works so well as he does as Ron Burgundy is because he knows exactly what it is that he’s trying to do, every step of the way. He sees the comedic-potential in him speaking to a dog, as if the two actually understand each other, and he just goes for the gull with it. Same could be said for his “Yazz flute” scene; could have easily been a one-note joke stretched way beyond its means, but Ferrell takes it to places that go higher, stranger and way better than one could ever imagine. Also, in the brief moments that this flick does tend to show some depth, you do realize that there’s maybe more to Ron than just a macho ‘stache and an expert-way at getting the ladies; maybe he’s getting sick of it? Ferrell shows that there’s more humanity and heart to this guy that feels like he actually longs for some sort of emotional-connection in his life, that doesn’t just consist of constant partying, boozing and whoring around (on Whore Island, of course); he actually may want to settle down, get hitched up, have some kids and live a very happy, luxurious life. It may be that I’m looking way too far into this, and chances are, I definitely am, but Ferrell is the one who anchors this movie, gets it to where it needs to go and practically made me laugh the hardest.

Which, once again, is not an easy thing for me to state considering the rest of the ensemble is equally as hilarious and scene-stealing as he is.

Paul Rudd, as usual, made me laugh just by how goofy he was here, playing the charismatic ladies man, Brian Fantana. If you give Rudd the spotlight and give him time to do his thing, he’ll make you laugh. You know this, I know this, he knows it, hell, we all know it! That’s why it’s no surprise in my mind to see how funny he is here, especially when he’s plugging something as outrageous as “Sex Panther”; which, in case you were wondering, is in fact real, and costs an awful lot of “keesh”. Bam! Two Paul Rudd movie moment-references in one sentence! And though he’s definitely not as much of a household name as the peeps surrounding him may be, David Koechner is still a laugh-out-loud riot as the hee-hawing sports man of the news team, Champ, and gave the idea of wanting a man to get an apartment with you, an even more homoerotic-feeling than it ever had before. He may be the weakest-link of the main-squad, but that’s less of a take-away than it sounds since he’s still damn hilarious.

And Brick. Oh, dear ol’ Brick. He loves his lamps, he pulls out random hand-grenades, he wants people to come to his pants party and best of all, he killed a guy with a trident. I think the less said about him, the best. Cause, in case you couldn’t tell, he’s awesome. Thank you, Steve Carell. You too, are quite awesome.

Oh, the days for when Steve Carell was only known as "that guy from the Colbert Report and Bruce Almighty".

Oh, the days for when Steve Carell was only known as “that guy from the Daily Show and Bruce Almighty“.

But you know what’s really surprising about this movie, besides it still being equally as hilarious this time around, as then the first time I saw it all those years ago, is that it’s a dude comedy that still has a pretty kick-ass female character in the vein of Veronica Corningstone, played to perfection by Christina Applegate. And you know, I have to give a lot of credit to Applegate for at least taking a lot of shots that she does here in this movie because while there are many jokes aimed towards her heine, her breasts and her lack of a penis, she goes along with them, takes them with her, and even dishes some out on her own, showing the boys that she can hang. She may not be as hilarious as the guys, considering her character is definitely more serious than anybody else in the bunch, but she still gets away with a couple of laughs and seems a lot tougher than any of the guys that surround her, which is saying A LOT for a comedy of this nature.

Trust me though, the cast does not end there, nor do the laughs. With this supporting cast, you get to see so many faces, some surprising than others, that you actually wonder if they’re actually there to be funny, or just show their faces and be ironic. The answer is both, but it’s perfect because they all get a chance to shine a bring a lil’ something to the table. For instance, the whole “Newsteam fight” is chock-full of cameos and surprises that I won’t dare to spoil for those who have yet to see this flick, but does more than just present us with a familiar-face and say, “Hey, look who it is! Isn’t that so crazy that he/she showed up to partake in this Will Ferrell-comedy?” Nope, instead, the whole movie keeps on giving us more and more of these faces to make us laugh, to make us love them more and also, have a great time. Which, at the end of the day, is what comedies are supposed to do in the first place. Sure, they can be thought-provoking comedies that have you toy around with the ideas of existentialism in your head, but that’s not how Will Ferrell and co. roll, so therefore, neither should you!

Consensus: Anything you’d ever expect from a Will Ferrell comedy, you get with Anchorman, and then some more randomness. So either take it, or leave it. Can’t go any deeper than that because the movie doesn’t want you to, and that was fine with me. Watch this, have a laugh or two, and stay classy. Or, if you stand on the other side of the spectrum, thanks for stopping by. But most importantly, stay classy.

9.5 / 10 = Full Price!!

If more newscasters looked like this in the 21st Century, I think online journalism would be ruined forever. Which means me!!!

If more newscasters looked like this in the 21st Century, then I think online journalism would be ruined forever. Which means me!!!

Photo’s Credit to: IMDBColliderJobloComingSoon.net

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39 responses to “Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004)

  1. ninvoid99 December 17, 2013 at 5:13 am

    Brick, my sweet Brick. He’s the reason why I want to see the 2nd film.

  2. Alex Thomas (@Athomas20) December 17, 2013 at 5:26 am

    Reading this review makes me think you will love the sequel!

    I didn’t particularly love the first (7/10) and thought the 2nd had some solid laughs but probably a 6/10.

    Keen for your thoughts!

  3. rathsreviews December 17, 2013 at 6:13 am

    Couldn’t agree more with you on this one. Will Ferrell is a particular type of comedy (albeit one that I dont understand how people dont find funny).

    Anchorman was arguably his launching platform and led to some fantastic collaborations with McKay with Talladega Nights, Step Brothers, and The Other Guys…all classics in my humble opinion. It’s with good reason that I have Anchorman 2 in my top 3 most anticipated movies of the year. I expect that it will be nothing short of tear-inducing hilarious.

    Great review Dan!

  4. caragale December 17, 2013 at 6:20 am

    Hate to say it, but I’m one of those rare people who doesn’t care for this film. There are parts I appreciate (Brick cracks me up and I think the showdown between the news teams is wonderful), yet as a whole…meh. Sorry dude. Nice review though! :)

  5. thomasjford December 17, 2013 at 9:22 am

    I’m torn on Anchorman. When it came out I loved it, but as the years have rolled by, I can take it or leave it. It’s no Zoolander in my opinion! In fact, I think Will Ferrell has really declined since this, and I would struggle to find many of his movies which I find really funny. Not good news for the sequel…

  6. Mark Walker December 17, 2013 at 10:24 am

    I know I’m in the minority on this one but I’m just not a fan of Anchorman at all. I find the humour childish and very bottom of the barrel. I know, I know! Let the backlash commence. ;)

  7. jjames36 December 17, 2013 at 11:55 am

    Guess it’s safe to say you loved it. ;-)

    Certainly sounds a good time – can’t until it’s in theaters around me so I can see it, too.

  8. Terry Malloy's Pigeon Coop December 17, 2013 at 12:39 pm

    Still a funny film no matter how many times I’ve seen it. Nice review matey.

  9. Popcorn Nights December 17, 2013 at 12:45 pm

    Nice review Dan, I’m with you on this, it’s one of my favourite comedies from the past 10 years, and really looking forward to seeing the second one. Should get to it by the weekend.

  10. lukebbtt December 17, 2013 at 12:57 pm

    Wow! You scored it high. I might have to watch it again haha.

  11. keith7198 December 17, 2013 at 3:25 pm

    You definitely liked it more than I did. It had its funny moments but it basically hits the same gag over and over only offering different variations.

  12. Brittani December 17, 2013 at 3:42 pm

    I love this film, it never gets old. I’m excited for the sequel.

  13. Nostra December 17, 2013 at 4:06 pm

    The BBC showed it a couple of nights ago. Did not like it the first time and the second time did not change my mind at all. Not for everyone then…

  14. Three Rows Back December 17, 2013 at 8:51 pm

    A modern classic. The sequel can’t possibly top this but I’m still looking forward to it. Great job Dan.

  15. Mr. Movie December 18, 2013 at 12:06 am

    Wow! 9.5, I’d rate it around a 7, it was okay, the street fight was fantastic, otherwise most of it was okay at best! Doubt I’ll check out the sequel unless it gets rave reviews!

  16. rgagne December 18, 2013 at 12:11 am

    I enjoyed your review, but man a 9.5?? This is such a terrible movie. I seriously only laughed at two parts. I would have passed on the sequel but a few friends want me to bring them to it. I’m in a small crowd I guess.

    • CMrok93 December 18, 2013 at 8:31 am

      No, you aren’t. There’s a good amount of peeps I know who don’t like this movie, but yet, there are also others out there that I know who adore it to high heavens.

  17. Evan Crean January 5, 2014 at 9:54 pm

    I also love Anchorman and Ron Burgundy Dan, so I’m right there with you. I laughed my ass off when I saw this in the theater and viewing it numerous times after I bought it on DVD. Will Ferrell is at his finest in this film and he definitely knows what to do as Ron Burgundy. If there was any doubt whether he lost his touch, it was erased last month when I covered a press conference where Ferrell appeared in character as Ron Burgundy and took questions as him. The man’s ability to improv is impressive. The supporting cast really makes this movie great and all of the ridiculous ad-libbed lines. My favorite comes after Brian puts on Sex Panther and someone exclaims “This is worse than the time the raccoon got into the copier.” That mental image alone cracks me up every time. Have you ever seen the alternate movie that they made with everything they cut out: Wake Up Ron Burgundy? I’ve never seen it but a friend of mine had it back in the day.

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