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movie reviewmovie review out of 4 Movie Review: Anchorman

Starring: Will Ferrell, Christina Applegate
Director: Adam McKay
Rated: R
RunTime: 91 Minutes
Release Date: July 2004
Genre: Comedy

*Also starring: David Koechner, Steven Carell, Paul Rudd, Fred Willard, Chris Parnell, Vince Vaughn, Chad Everett, Kevin Corrigan, Tara Subkoff, Kathryn Hahn

Review by Susan Granger
3 stars out of 4

When you can relate to a comedic situation, you often find it far funnier than it really is. I was the first woman hired to anchor the news at WNHC, which is now WTNH in New Haven, and I'll never forget the mistrust and disdain with which I was greeted that first day on the job.

"There was an age when only men were allowed to read the news..." the introduction claims. It was the '70s, just when "Anchorman" is set. Narcissistic Ron Burgundy (Will Farrell) is the top-rated anchorman in San Diego, heading an all-male newsteam of investigative reporter Brian Fantana (Paul Rudd), sportscaster Champ Kind (SNL alum David Koechner) and weatherman Brick Tamland (Steve Carrell of "The Daily Show"). Into their smug, egotistical, chauvinistic bastion comes Veronica Corningstone (Christina Applegate), a savvy, ambitious journalist hired by producer Ed Harken (Fred Willard) to bring in some diversity. While Burgundy's smitten with her, no one takes her seriously until she steps in following a road rage traffic fiasco involving a manic cyclist (Jack Black), a wayward burrito and Burgundy's beloved dog. She's an overnight success, which burns Burgundy's fragile self-esteem, and a goofy battle-of-the-sexes erupts.

Written by Will Farrell and director Adam McKay, it's a campy, extended "Saturday Night Live" skit - but an amusing one. While Ferrell embodies the clueless buffoon, he and Applegate have a cheerful comedic chemistry which is even more apparent in the outtakes that play over the final credits. Ben Stiller, Tim Robbins and Vice Vaughn pop up in cameos, and the soundtrack is a delight. On the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy" is an enthusiastic, harmlessly silly 7, celebrating the emancipation of the TV newsroom.

Copyright 2004 Susan Granger

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