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Overall Rating

Worth A Look: 34.01%
Just Average: 3.05%
Pretty Crappy: 6.6%
Sucks: 11.68%

11 reviews, 131 user ratings

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Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy
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by Jay Seaver

"Better than many idiot movies."
4 stars

Let's get something straight right at the start: Nothing in Anchorman arises organically from anything else. This is a movie that wears its complete artificiality on its sleeve, all about this joke right now. When you take that tack, every joke had better be funny, because any space between them is absolutely dead. Anchorman hits the mark about 75% of the time, which is a pretty decent success rate.

Anchorman falls squarely into the genre of "idiot movie"; one or more (generally male) morons feel like they've got the world on a string until an actual competent person (who is usually female) starts horning in on their turf. By the time the dumb men and smart girl have put aside their differences, there's been plenty of time to laugh at the men getting in trouble for basically being idiots, but also to find that they're decent-hearted and maybe not quite so stupid after all. In this case, the idiots are a local news team in 1978 San Diego, with the non-idiot being Veronica Corningstone (Christina Applegate), the station's first woman reporter.

In a more sophisticated movie (and by "more sophisticated", I'm talking about an American Pie sequel or something by the Farrelly Brothers), the fact that Ron Burgandy (Will Ferrell) and his evening-news cohorts do not in fact seem to have good hearts (they never actually stop being sexist jerks), or that there's really no reason for Veronica to have any actual interest in him would be a bigger issue. The same for Ron's strangely fluctuating levels of common sense.

This movie, however, hides those issues behind quirkiness. You can make a character much more sympathetic by having him love his dog and treat said pooch like an equal. Similarly, the decision to eschew four-letter words works well in three ways: It makes the characters a little less coarse, it makes the use of the single f-bomb a PG-13 movie is allowed seem like an actual transgression, and it forces the writers (Ferrell and director Adam McKay) to fill the dialogue with peculiar turns of phrase that demand attention and earn chuckles out of just where they came up with that (the outtakes over the credits suggest many were likely improvised).

Talking about the characters as anything other than joke vectors is probably beside the point, but it's worth mentioning that the actors mostly manage to deliver those jokes very well. Ferrell gives himself many of the best lines, although the absolute cream go to Steven Carell as Brick, the weatherman whose name roughly describes his intellectual capacity. There's a real art to saying things that make almost no sense without simply confusing the audience. Another standout in limited time is Fred Willard as the station's news director; he somehow manages good-natured irritation.

Christina Applegate falls into the category of "does what she can"; between this, Starsky & Hutch and Dodgeball (and that's just for this year), it seems like writing genuinely funny female characters is something that the (mostly male) makers of this type of movie have a very difficult time with. Applegate fares better than Christine Taylor did in Dodgeball, but is basically reacting to people not treating her with respect. There's not much reason for Paul Rudd or David Koechner to be in this movie (they play the other members of the news team). There are several very funny cameos - in particular, the anchormen for the other local news teams are well-cast.

It's worth mentionig that a number of scenes from the preview simply do not appear in the movie; apparently enough bits and whole subplots were cut out to make a second movie (which will allegedly appear on the Anchorman DVD). Comedies must be edited in an almost ruthless manner, but it's kind of curious that jokes deemed funny enough to put in the trailer didn't make the cut for the final film.

Anchorman isn't quite as consistently funny as Dodgeball, but it does manage the guffaw quite a bit. And full-sized belly-laughs go a long way to making the movie's shortcomings forgivable.

link directly to this review at http://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=10198&reviewer=371
originally posted: 07/15/04 14:38:55
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User Comments

4/23/15 stanley welles balances social satire with some amusing visual gags and moments of surreal hilarity 4 stars
3/22/15 Jerry Spray Will Ferrell was really at his funniest in this worthwhile movie. 4 stars
12/04/11 Pamela White Will is just annoying and obnoxious 1 stars
1/10/10 Chad Dillon Cooper Comedy about a time when local newsmen were gods. 5 stars
9/27/08 Samantha Pruitt really funny, great one-liners , Will Ferrell is still a one trick pony 4 stars
7/25/08 Erik Visser It was okay, Christina Applegate is hot! 3 stars
3/03/08 ladavies This movie makes me laugh everytime I see it. Love all of the characters. 5 stars
1/11/08 Pamela White Will is just awful 1 stars
6/27/07 gr117 I'm gonna punch you in the ovary. /quote whore 5 stars
5/31/07 umfumdisi "Would you like to attend my pants party?" 5 stars
4/10/07 Dan Absurdity at its finest. One of the funniest movies that I've ever watched. 5 stars
2/21/07 Beau seriously overrated, had its moments but nothing special!! 2 stars
2/04/07 R.W.Welch Slow at first but picks up some flair as it goes. C+ 3 stars
1/30/07 Albert Stone One of my favourite movies - a laugh riot throughout. Excellent. 5 stars
8/27/06 Dan Excellent comedy! The entire cast was inspired. 5 stars
8/08/06 Dragon The Artist Full of dumb@$$ 1-liners, annoyingly stupid characters& piontlessly vomit-inducing sex gags 1 stars
3/18/06 CJ Funny and great one-liners 5 stars
2/16/06 Phil M. Aficionado Stupid, stupid, stupid good 4 stars
1/21/06 Crackhead The best comedy ever!!!!! 5 stars
11/16/05 Jenna Catlett Woo Hoo Anchorman! 4 stars
11/04/05 Steve Bell It Is Crap 1 stars
10/28/05 Shannon Andrew Fountain LOUD NOISES! 5 stars
10/18/05 michele et francoise anchorman rocks... you ate the whole wheel of cheese? wow, im not even mad, im amazed! 5 stars
10/12/05 Agent Sands It's another dumb teen comedy, but goddammit is it fucking hilarious. 4 stars
9/24/05 BC Anyone who doesn't like this movie is an idiot! 5 stars
8/25/05 EZ Applegate sucks, no story and not funny 1 stars
8/24/05 Anthony G "mmmm, I just burnt my tounge" haha I laughed for days 5 stars
8/23/05 Dan "Where'd you get your clothes, the toilet store?" -Brick Tamland 5 stars
8/18/05 ES Ferrel is held up by a super strong supporting cast, so many funny parts 4 stars
8/15/05 Bad Critic "Sorry Chamo, but I think I ate your chocolate Squirell." 5 stars
8/11/05 Sully ferrell is flat out funny and Carell is a scene stealer!!!! 5 stars
8/05/05 flamb_boy Can we possibly move past locker room humor? 2 stars
7/29/05 Rillie Painful to sit through. 1 stars
7/03/05 beardy i wank over this film. 5 stars
7/03/05 Vic Pretty ordinary wouldnt waste my time..Willl FERREL's day was over before it begun 1 stars
6/14/05 Robert WTF is going on with this movie? It blows a huge dick! 1 stars
6/07/05 Valerie G. Pretty good, and funny too! 4 stars
5/29/05 katana_6506 Possibly the most unfunny movie I've ever seen. 1 stars
5/26/05 tony HILARIOUS. A KEEPER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
5/26/05 Dan "Where did you get your suits... the toilet shop?" Hilarious line! LMAO YEAH IT IS CHARLIE 5 stars
5/16/05 E-FUNK I'm officially sick of Will Ferrell. Just watch the trailer and be done with it. 2 stars
4/03/05 Charlie "Where did you get your suits... the toilet shop?" Hilarious line! 5 stars
4/01/05 Tom Benton Silly, hilarious comedy vaguely reminescent of the "Naked Gun"-era; Ferrell is great. 4 stars
3/28/05 craig varney worst movie i've seen in 20 years couldn't wait for it to end 1 stars
3/26/05 ELI I completely recommend this movie!... unless you have a sense of humor. Hate this movie. 1 stars
3/17/05 Sheila maybe funny for a skit, but not a movie 2 stars
3/09/05 garrett ogren movie is awsome 5 stars
2/25/05 jabroniunc will farrell is funny; steve carrell is better 5 stars
2/06/05 Kenneth Helmick Hilarious movie. Mo Rocca is great in this film 5 stars
2/04/05 LilyM Many jokes miss but when they hit, they hit hard. 4 stars
2/04/05 youreo Eeither you love him or you hate him. He is very funny and entertaining even in this movie 4 stars
2/02/05 haha This movie is fucking hilarious, pulls out a grenade and shit ha! 5 stars
1/31/05 Christy Harris Way too slapstick, I can take a little, this one is too much 2 stars
1/22/05 Allen fuckin halarious 5 stars
1/13/05 Dan LMAO. 5 stars
1/07/05 Al Guy I love this movie. Heart busting funny! 5 stars
1/07/05 tatum An extended SNL skit, but funny none the less 5 stars
1/02/05 The Talking Elbow Well, some people don't have a sense of humor, so it won't click. 5 stars
1/01/05 Landshark hijinks without a net, or even a particular target 4 stars
1/01/05 Freddy very few laughs here. why do these ferrel movies keep getting such high ratings? they suck! 2 stars
1/01/05 Uncle Salty Rates up (down) there with the Nutty Professor 2, and I'm a Ferrel fan! 1 stars
12/31/04 Da Streetz Dis moovey is teh suxors 1 stars
12/29/04 Katie Evridge it was ok. It did not appeal to my sense of humor. 3 stars
12/05/04 da hood' ohh! ohh! ohhhhhhh! the worst movie ive ever seen, HANDS FUCKING DOWN! AAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! 1 stars
11/19/04 Stacey K The best movie, ever! 5 stars
11/11/04 Johny Longprong If you dont watch it, your fucked in the head 5 stars
11/10/04 Howie Maybe the greatest movie of all time 5 stars
11/07/04 Beto O filme ť muito bom, fazem um pastel„o inteligente 5 stars
10/27/04 Hilary Adamson What's wrong you reviewers? This makes WHITE CHICKS look like CITIZEN KANE! (btw I'm white) 1 stars
10/22/04 Kathy ter Plugg Cameo herein 2nd only to marrying Susan Sirhandon as dumbest thing Tim Robbins ever did. 1 stars
10/21/04 Hilary Adamson How EricDSnider can like this? A film of Mother Teresa farting would be more funny! 1 stars
10/21/04 Regina George didn't really survive the school bus accident How many kinds od dumb comedy are there and how many ways can they clash with each other? 1 stars
10/19/04 Stephen Excellent, sooooo funny 5 stars
10/14/04 simba funniest movie i seen in a long time 5 stars
10/13/04 Desperado Insamely funny, an instant classic, Will Ferrell is a genious 5 stars
10/12/04 Crystalina absolutely loved it!! 5 stars
9/23/04 Jakerh "Im trapped inside a glass box a emotion!" I love it! The funniest film of 2004! Must see! 5 stars
9/23/04 Jenna Furr "San Diego" means "Whale's Vagina" In German -- a new low in DUMB movie lines! 1 stars
9/20/04 Amanda The best film I've seen all year and the quotes are unreal!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
9/10/04 Alexis Winters Steve Carrell is by far the funniest thing in this film, he's brilliant. That and the Fight 4 stars
9/10/04 jeff very few funny parts, lame jokes. 2 stars
9/09/04 zach this is the funniest film i have seen in years, an istant classic. 5 stars
9/05/04 cindy s. I'm a huge fan of silly movies, but I wanted to walk out of Anchorman. It was no Old School 2 stars
8/26/04 M Funny as!!!!! must see, refreshing comedy! 4 stars
8/25/04 S.F. Laughed and laughed then laughed some more. like the almost West side storyish rumble. 5 stars
8/05/04 em it was hilarious. 5 stars
8/05/04 Mix Master Mason Brilliant, genius, bravo. Paul Rudd steals the show. 5 stars
8/02/04 Kitina Blues i love vince vaughn! hes adorable!!!!! 5 stars
7/31/04 Kathryn Knowlton laughed the entire way through, awesome 5 stars
7/27/04 doc just saw it for the 2nd time--funnier than the 1st 5 stars
7/25/04 bullit16 Very stupid, but very VERY funny 4 stars
7/25/04 Titus Uh . . . this wasn't funny. This was painful. 2 stars
7/25/04 your mama very funny movie 4 stars
7/24/04 JL Very Funny!! 5 stars
7/23/04 T.M.G Just hilarious. Plain and simple. There was a void of good comedy and this filled it. 5 stars
7/23/04 Jim Too much improv made the dialogue stilted and awkward 2 stars
7/22/04 gemma really funny!! i loved brick and ron!! 5 stars
7/21/04 Gibson Hilarious, much better than Dodgeball 5 stars
7/21/04 Evan Hilarity throughout. Everything is so random but so well-timed; they don't need punchlines! 5 stars
7/21/04 Robby1 Only stupid people think this movie is funny, it's true, I've done a survey 2 stars
7/20/04 Lauren BEST MOVIE I'VE SEEN IN A LONG TIME... Never laughed so hard at a movie in my life!!! A+++ 5 stars
7/20/04 Sophia this movie was so random...I LOVED IT!!! hey uhhh brick, where'd you get that hand granade? 5 stars
7/20/04 nick2k fucking hilarious...stupid...BUT SOOOO FUNNY! 5 stars
7/20/04 Llicious Oh my God! This movie was too much perfection! Thank you Will Farrell! 5 stars
7/17/04 Onyeabo Monago Wasn't feelin' this movie - perhaps because I'm not a child of the 70's? 2 stars
7/17/04 Mike Hennings This stinker sucks. Will Farrell never has been funny and never will be. 1 stars
7/16/04 Fred I wasted 2 hours of my life watching it. 2 stars
7/16/04 bobo Great drafty open window! This is a good film. 5 stars
7/15/04 Amerigo Vespukey Will Ferrell is only funny on ATHF. This movie is shit. Save $8. Hit self in head w/ hammer 1 stars
7/15/04 communarchy i have never laughed that hard in my life 5 stars
7/15/04 josh very funny 4 stars
7/14/04 Crockettman Bad Hair, bad clothes, cheesey chiche's and a porn soundtrack. SWEET ! 5 stars
7/13/04 Caiphn Whoever didn't enjoy this is 'retarded'. Shame on you. 5 stars
7/13/04 Desperado Will Ferrell is a genious, and Steve Carell is hilarious, Brick is non stop funny 5 stars
7/13/04 jane will farrell is god...and you know he doesn't speak spanish. 5 stars
7/12/04 zf very very funny. Brick was awesome. 5 stars
7/12/04 Bigfoot Anyone who didn't like this movie smells like Bigfoot's dick. 5 stars
7/12/04 Mike V Hilarious! The script is a mess but I laughed like crazy. 4 stars
7/12/04 Nicole It was alright, but I expected laugh more 3 stars
7/12/04 Vicious I love Steve Carrel 5 stars
7/11/04 George Jung "Go fuck yourself San Diego!" 4 stars
7/11/04 cinkcool Good comedy...the prank phone call/tits magee bit was hilarious 5 stars
7/11/04 Farrah I think this film was great,very funny, i love Will ferrell and everyone else in this movie 5 stars
7/11/04 Sean Mediocrely funny. 3 stars
7/10/04 Lindsay Less than stellar 3 stars
7/10/04 ajay very very funny, I was walking out of the theater laughing! 5 stars
7/10/04 Danny The BEST Will Ferrell comedy I've seen since his 'cowbell' sketch on SNL 5 stars
7/10/04 Aaron Horrible! Enough to appeal to the dimwittedness of society 1 stars
7/09/04 Jeff Semlow The funniest movie I've seen in a long long time. 5 stars
7/03/04 Mike Cecconi Though I don't usually like Ferrel, one of the best dumb-funny movies I've ever seen. 5 stars
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  09-Jul-2004 (PG-13)
  DVD: 28-Dec-2004

  10-Sep-2004 (12)


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