Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues

If there is an Oscar for a film championing human degradation, this movie wins in a runaway.

Anchorman 2Let’s not mince words and get to the bottom line. Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues is demeaning, insulting and consistently offensive. I know it’s supposed to be, but consider that it also is nearly devoid of any humor. Will Ferrell has succeeded in pulling a massive scam on the American public with his full-scale media blitz, and the end result is a film that you will be sorely tempted to walk out of multiple times.

Look, I know what it was meant to do, namely criticize television news for becoming little more than cheap theatrical entertainment. News shows are about advertisement and ratings, nothing more, and we are left with appalling shows like Bill O’Reilly on Fox News and Chris Matthews on CSNBC.

It’s about them, and only them. I find mouthpieces like Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and the rest of that crew to be little more than philosophical mavens who continually preen like some banty rooster in a farmyard.

What is so profoundly shocking about Mr. Ferrell’s Anchorman 2 is the total abandonment of any form of moral principle. This encompasses multiple scenes, not the least of which was partially displayed in the previews where Ferrell is sitting at a table surrounded by black relatives of a young supervisor he was banging with glee.

What follows is a sadistic attempt at gutter humor as he attempts to impersonate his version of a black man sitting with relatives. No matter how you slice it, it is one of the most wretched moments ever to appear on film.

To make things even more abysmal, all of the supporting actors play dismally mentally challenged characters. Steve Carell plays Brick Tamland, a weather man who seems to be born on another planet. You are supposed to believe that pathetic is funny, and Carell becomes a one joke mess.

Paul Rudd and David Koechner are no better, and I can’t help but think that both were profoundly embarrassed during the filming of this movie. In addition, Kristen Wiig appears as a young TV employee with all of the social grace of an Indiana Amish farm girl who has left home for the first time. At times I turned my head to hide my shame.

On the upside, Christina Applegate appears as Ferrell’s beleaguered wife, the only person in the film who has a modicum of common sense. Regardless,  if I haven’t made it clear, I hated this movie from the very beginning.

Yes, I entered the theater with trepidation, as I have always felt the first movie was overrated. This one amounts to little more than Hollywood junk out of the Judd Apatow studio, and it makes you wonder if he has anything left in his artistic bag. He failed completely with last year’s This is 40, which also starred Paul Rudd, and the only good thing about Anchorman 2 is the expectation that Ron Burgundy will soon become a forgettable footnote in Hollywood history.

Seeing this God awful mess was made all the more dreadful with the discovery that AMC was charging $10.25 for a ticket for a Wednesday opening. That organization should be as ashamed of its billing practices as I am for seeing the film.