Ron Burgandy has been everywhere as of late, which means the return of the character in a new Anchorman movie. The long awaited sequel to the 2004 hit follows Ron and his news team (featuring Paul Rudd, Steve Carell, and David Koechner) as they enter the 24/7 news field with a new network in New York City. But problems arise for the team in the form of a new boss (Meagan Good), a younger anchorman (James Marsden), and the toils of entering an unknown field of news.
Anchorman 2 keeps the humor that made the first movie such a signature but tries to push the limits of the characters and show that a sequel was warranted. For the most part, this one succeeds in doing that. Ron takes on new challenges but with a similar structure which creates new laughs, the team still has their quirks and like Ron try and cope with the changing news world in the only ways they know how to, and the new characters that enter the fray seem fresh but still have a demeanor that they could of been just as great in the first film.
Where Anchorman 2 wins is when it sticks to its routes. In the scenes where Ron and the gang are trying to find ways to make their graveyard shift news show interesting and are doing crazy stunts in order to entertain people, it is at its most funny. Where it struggles is when it gets bogged down in trying to move the story along and forces in laughs that don’t work as well.
The part when Ron goes blind after a skating accident is where this is most apparent. The movie was rolling after the team had found that their style of news was the most popular and was making the station a hit. One such instance was when they did crack on air and were arrested for it soon after. But once Ron was secluded off after he became blind, the story just seemed to bog everything down and almost brings the movie to a halt.
Not to say that this part didn’t have its comical moments, but it was a section that just didn’t have the strength that the beginning of the film or middle had that was making it a hilarious return for these characters. The ending was great though as another news anchor fight led to a plethora of hilarious cameos that rivaled the first movie in craziness and wacky characters.
Character wise, everyone had a return to form. Paul Rudd stuck out more in this one as Brain Fantana, which probably comes from how much he has broken out since that first movie. Steve Carell was good as Brick Tamland but I got the feeling that some of his lines were forced and were a product of everyone expecting his character to do and say crazy things. That being said, he still had many memorable parts (see his “funeral”). David Koechner was about the same as Champ even though the scene where Ron finds him at his chicken restaurant had me rolling.
Overall, Anchorman 2 was about what you expected and wanted from this return. The characters were still top notch and hilarious and the movie added more crazy moments for Ron to take part in. It isn’t the funniest movie of the year but it is one that you will go back to once it comes out on DVD/Blu-ray. It probably will take over TBS for a time being at least.