Review by: Jack Foley | Rating:
DVD SPECIAL FEATURES: Deleted Scenes; Bloopers; The Making
Of Commentary; Afternoon Delight Music Video.
FORMER Saturday Night Live Star, Will Ferrell, is on headline-grabbing
form for his latest comedy, Anchorman, a surreal and utterly stupid
look at the male-dominated news-rooms of the Seventies.
As super-coiffed news-reader, Ron Burgundy, Ferrell is the epitome
of male chauvinism, a none-too-bright anchorman whose dominance
of the airwaves is about to be undermined by the emergence of
feminism, in the form of Christina Applegate’s over-ambitious
reporter, Veronica Corningstone.
Far from being equipped to deal with a winner-takes-all battle
of the sexes, however, Ron finds himself increasingly burdened
by his own ineptitude, as well as the testosterone-fuelled antics
of his news-team - a mentally-challenged bunch of misfits who
are equally as under-prepared for the presence of a woman.
Following hot-on-the-heels of the equally stupid Dodgeball:
A True Underdog Story, Anchorman is another of those comedies
that succeeds in putting a big soppy grin on your face in spite
of any misgivings you may have about the story.
It knows it’s a one-joke movie, yet succeeds in milking
it for all it’s worth thanks to the winning charisma of
its central performer, and his uncanny ability to make the most
absurd situation seem extremely funny.
Hence, whether he is having a conversation
with his pet dog, throwing burritos at passing bikers (a hilarious
cameo from Jack Black), or attempting to woo and win women with
crass pull-lines such as ‘your heinie is breathtaking, I
want to be friends with it’, Ferrell is, once again, on
What’s more, he is ably supported by his moronic news buddies,
especially Steve Carell’s hopelessly retarded weatherman,
who comes close to stealing just about every sequence he is in
(just as he did in Bruce Almighty),
and Paul (Friends)
Rudd’s egotistical ladies-man, who continually finds his
ego deflated by his brush manner with the opposite sex.
Applegate, too, emerges with credit, providing an able sparring
partner for Burgundy, who is equally as adept at getting down
and dirty to secure the prized anchorman position for her own,
as she is at tugging at his heart-strings.
With all this in mind, however, it is worth pointing out that
the film does tend to sag during its middle section, when the
joke feels stretched and Ferrell’s ego goes into overdrive,
thereby missing out on becoming a comedy classic.
Had he reigned himself in, the film might have been given a little
more space to explore new territory, instead of feeling like a
series of sketches from Ferrell’s own Saturday Night Live
bag of tricks - it’s little wonder to find that he co-wrote
the film with director, Adam McKay, another veteran of the SNL
But for anyone willing to forgive the occasional lapse, Anchorman
offers plenty to ease away the strains of everyday life, not least
in the inspired use of cameos and the hilarious out-takes, which
bring the movie to a suitably satisfying finale.
For once, tuning into the news is not just about the bad things