Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Day 364 - Anchorman - The Legend of Ron Burgundy

Anchorman - The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004) directed by Adam McKay

There isn't a single guy around my age group that doesn't love Anchorman. This is the Animal House of our generation as far as cult comedies go and in my opinion may very well be the best slapstick comedy of all time. At least in my circle of the world, I don't think there's been a more quoted movie in the past ten years. It is pure comedic genius.

The film obviously begins and ends with Will Farrell who plays Ron Burgundy with such enthusiasm and charm that you can't help but like him no matter how ridiculous he may behave. What makes Farrell such a great comedic actor is his ability to say something completely absurd and make it sound hilarious. The way he delivers his lines never fails to crack me up even after the umpteenth time watching it. "I don't know how to put this, but I'm kind of a big deal." "Discovered by the Germans in 1904, they named it San Diego, which of course in German means a whale's vagina." Haha, I could seriously go on just quoting him forever. "Milk was a bad choice!" I think if there is one scene that can sum up Will Farrell's comedic genius is the scene where he's in the telephone booth, or rather "a glass cage of emotion." The agony of his face matched with the ridiculousness of the situation can pretty much only be done by him. Farrell also has a great cast to surround him including stars in their own rights, Steve Carell and Paul Rudd. I've never been a huge fan of David Koechner's over the top douchery but even here he's really funny.

On a purely artistic level, this can't be a great movie because, well, it's a slapstick comedy meant to be a total farce. There is no great cinematography or an sweeping musical score. It's not an important movie meant to move audiences. In that way comedies are  always judged unfairly because while this film would never be nominated for any Oscars it is so much better than so many of those serious movies we see around awards time. As a comedy, it does exactly what it sets out to do and that is to make you laugh, and laugh hard. If you are one of the very best films of your genre you should be considered a great movie and Anchorman fits the bill. I recently heard about a sequel coming up and needless to say I am very very excited. Keep it classy, San Diego.

Grade: A

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