#1 NASCAR driver Ricky Bobby stays atop the heap thanks to a pact with his best friend and teammate, Cal Naughton, Jr. But when a French Formula One driver, makes his way up the ladder, Ricky Bobby's talent and devotion are put to the test.
John C. Reilly,
Sacha Baron Cohen
In 2002, two rival Olympic ice skaters were stripped of their gold medals and permanently banned from men's single competition. Presently, however, they've found a loophole that will allow them to qualify as a pairs team.
John Beckwith and Jeremy Grey, a pair of committed womanizers who sneak into weddings to take advantage of the romantic tinge in the air, find themselves at odds with one another when John meets and falls for Claire Cleary.
In 1970s San Diego, journalism was a well respected profession and people actually cared about what they saw on TV. And the top rated anchor man in the city is Ron Burgundy. He enjoys his run at the top, and has for the last five years. And his news team is equally as good as he is. Professional jock and former professional baseball player Champ Kind handles the sports, the curiously dim witted Brick Tamland - who's a few channels short of a cable subscription - handles the weather, and ladies' man Brian Fantana - whose collection of fine scents would be in the Guinness Book Of Records - handles the on-field reporting. But now all that is about to change forever. The TV station Burgundy works for, Channel 4, has embraced diversity and has hired a beautiful new female anchor named Veronica Corningstone. While Ron Burgundy and the rest of the Channel 4 news team enjoys fighting with competitors, drinking, and flirting with the ladies, Veronica quietly climbs her way to the top. And ... Written by
WILHELM SCREAM: While everyone is disgusted by Brian's "stinky" cologne at an office, one of them screams. See more »
Although the story takes place in the 70s, many of the aerial shots in the film showcase San Diego's new skyline including the Hyatt towers and the new Petco ballpark. See more »
There was a time, a time before cable. When the local anchorman reigned supreme. When people believed everything they heard on TV. This was an age when only men were allowed to read the news. And in San Diego, one anchorman was more man then the rest. His name was Ron Burgundy. He was like a god walking amongst mere mortals. He had a voice that could make a wolverine purr and suits so fine they made Sinatra look like a hobo. In other words, Ron Burgundy was the balls.
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At the opening, there is this proclaimation: "Based on actual events. Only the people, places and events have been changed." See more »
Consistent and thorough silliness keep this above-average comedy afloat
I went to "Anchorman" expecting another super-mainstream, lowest-common-denominator, SNL-derived romp. Now, these aren't the worst movies in the world, to be sure. "Happy Gilmore" and "Old School" are pretty agreeable ways to while away the time. But usually about an hour in to these affairs, I've had enough of the broadness and predictability, which starts to get downright oppressive. It's not just that they're lowbrow--it's that they're so overwhelmingly, disappointingly conventional.
Luckily, this isn't what "Anchorman" is. "Anchorman" is a refreshingly off-kilter outing from an unlikely source--Will Ferrell, the current reigning lord of middle-of-the-road fratboy Sandlerism. The film has a lot more in common with Mel Brooks and Zucker-Abrahams-Zucker than anything in the SNL family tree. It prizes out-and-out silliness and absurdity over bathroom humor and penis jokes (though there's plenty of the latter, don't worry), and pulls it off admirably. In essence, the key to this stuff is never letting off of the goofiness even for a second--the audience should never be allowed to take anything seriously.
"Anchorman" achieves this with exceedingly silly and bizarre dialogue complemented by killer comic performances from Ferrell, Paul Rudd, Vince Vaughn and Steve Carrel. You'd have to be lobotomized to maintain a straight face through lines like "It's made with bits of real panther. So you know it's good." and "I'm riding a big, furry tractor!" The direction and pacing are also pretty solid at times, and the requisite celeb cameos are very nicely done (especially in one particular scene which I wouldn't dream of ruining).
The film's not without its flaws, certainly. Chief among them is the wasting of one of the best comic character actors in the biz: Fred Willard. If ever there was someone born to play a smarmy local TV newsman, Willard is it. But he's inexplicably cast here as a dull station suit, while David Koechner plods through the sportscaster role that was clearly meant for him--passable but certainly not as inspired as Willard would have been. Also, I think that the story would have benefited if Vaughn and his cronies, the closest thing to villains in this lightheaded romp, had a little more face time.
But these are comparatively minor problems--the point is that Ferrel has given us something that's really funny in a way that's appreciably different from the endless SNL movie-mill. It's not Monty Python, but it is a healthy departure from what has become the comic mainstream. Most importantly, the laughs are frequent, long, and deep--check it out and you won't be disappointed.
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