Crimson Quill’s Appraisal #186
Number of Views: Two
Release Date: 18 December 2013 (USA)
Country of Origin: United States
Box Office: $172,952,707
Running Time: 143 minutes
Director: Adam McKay
Producer: Judd Apatow, Will Ferrell, Adam McKay
Screenplay: Will Ferrell, Adam McKay
Cinematography: Oliver Wood
Score: Andrew Feltenstein, John Nau
Editing: Brent White, Melissa Bretherton
Studio: Apatow Productions, Gary Sanchez Productions
Distributor: Paramount Pictures
Stars: Will Ferrell, Steve Carrell, Paul Rudd, David Koechner, Christina Applegate, Meagan Good, Kristin Wiig, Fred Willard, Chris Parnell, Dylan Baker, Greg Kinnear, Josh Lawson
Cameos: Harrison Ford, Vince Vaughn, Will Smith, Jim Carrey, Marion Cotillard, Sacha Baron Cohen, Drake, Kirsten Dunst, Liam Neeson, John C Reilly, Tina Fey, Amy Poelher, Kayne West
Suggested Audio Chicken of the Cave
Robin Thicke Featuring Ron Burgundy “Ride Like The Wind”
Have you ever pondered what a langoustine would look like riding atop a panther? Wondered why a Sasquatch has never been a hit on Broadway? Tried to empty an entire laundry basket of gym socks into your mouth? If the answer to any of these posers is yes then you should already be familiar with Ron Burgundy. Ron… is… the balls! In 2004 he and his lion-hearted troupe of merry men Brian Fantana, Champ Kind and biochemical weapon engineer Brick Tamland laid siege upon our funny bones in one of Keeper’s all-time most quotable comedy movies, Anchorman. I didn’t just watch Ron that day; I shared belly laughs with him, shed tears alongside him, rejoiced as he found his slice of San Diego pie and replicated his cum-faces as he slid Veronica Corningstone the old Jazz Flute. We bonded.
Any comedy worth its salt matures with age and becomes funnier with any subsequent views. Adam McKay’s Anchorman still has the capacity to reach inside me, release the laughter valve and cause hazardous levels of hyperventilation. That is largely due to one man… one mustache… one pair of pleated slacks… one pair of golden plums and one impeccable hair style. All of the aforementioned are tools in Ron Burgundy’s inventory. I never could grow a ‘tache but Burgundy’s tale gave me hope, taught me it’s okay to dream and that, at the end of every rainbow, are a pair of moleskin carpet slippers with the letters RB embroidered into them. I wanted a little of what he had, those dashing Mexican looks, that marvelous scent of mahogany and ox perspiration, the ability to charm the ladies just by straightening my tie. Shit Ron, I just wanted to be you.
Then, as all hopes had dissipated and with the news team long since disbanded, I began to hear whispers across the airwaves. These mutterings suggested that the boys were getting back together again for old time’s sake. I leapt, at least five inches from the floor, in jubilation upon hearing this glorious revelation and have waited like Miss Rosa at a bus stop just to catch another sniff of Ron’s succulent veal. Finally my prayers have been answered, the team has reformed and the daily news has become funky once more, a whole trunk of funk, Funkelstiltskin on an old vintage sewing machine huffing crack crystals from a faux leather elbow patch. That’s right baby, it’s on!
First consideration: Is Ron as much the balls as he was first time out? Ron was born the balls, he will die the balls and, thus, everything in between that is just balls. Will Ferrell knows Ron Burgundy well, moreover, Will Ferrell knows us well. He knows what it feels like to laugh until his sphincter slackens, is fully aware that prolapse is no joke yet blatantly disregards that at every turn, has possibly woken up more than once nibbling a vagrant’s earlobe. He gets it and comedy is in the safest pair of feelers ever to bottle feed a baby shark. Every moment he is on-screen is infused with his brilliance, he orchestrates it effortlessly, not only through quips and slogans, but through the vaguest raised eyebrow or one glazed look of innocence.
Anyone who knows Keeper well will know of the lofty regard in which I hold Paul Rudd. He is an improvisational genius and an absolute set jester to boot. You feel that energy? I do… I feel it right down in the middle of my matching spam globes. That is the buzz of electricity and it flows freely between Ferrell and Rudd at any given time. Hell, the whole team is in on the current and, in Anchorman 2, it stretches through anyone sharing the lurve. Dylan Baker gives a doozy of a turn as affable GNN executive producer Freddie Shapp, the ever-resplendent Kristin Wiig offers another flawless account of herself as self-confessed ‘person people’ Chani Lastnamé and James Marsden’s Jack Lime/Dick Phuk is loaded with verve and knowing swagger.
Baxter is back too. You have to love the teeth-licking mutt and he gets his own Point Break moment, one which he laps up like another hound’s feces. Anchorman 2 fills its lengthy running time, something synonymous with Apatow productions, with absolute ease and finds the time to throw in rehabilitated man-eating sharks, anti-gravity bowling balls, chicken of the cave, denim contraceptives and, most pleasing of all, the return of ‘Aqualung’… on ice no less! Tell me you’re not feeling that now. Drink it in as I’ve still only put the tip in. I’m going to the balls on this one.
Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues may not be quite as quotable as its predecessor but it is even more the spectacle; time, love and unrelenting vim has gone into every aspect of getting this polished up like a pair of viper-skin brogues and ready for prime time. It reads its cue with precision and washes over you like a San Diego breeze, only in New York. Of course, its ridiculousness gains momentum to the nth degree, but beneath all the belly laughs lies the heart of a proud panther. It manages to move you at the exact same time it pushes out your catheter and Burgundy’s relationship with his six-year-old son is deeply affecting, proving that, in the words of the great Ron himself “life is not all skipping rope and grabbing ass!”
There will always be those for whom a sequel will never please, bigoted types largely, the kind that seem to think yesterday was a better day than today could ever be. I pity those so fixated with what was that they deny what is the chance to truly be. Wow, that was beautiful. You see, YOU SEE WHAT RON BURGUNDY DOES TO ME?! Get over yourselves and take it for precisely what it is… brilliant. Now “which one of you pipe hittin’ bitches can pass the salt?”
Crimson Quill’s Judgement: 9/10
Richard Charles Stevens
Keeper of The Crimson Quill
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