Anchorman: Wake Up Ron Burgundy,The Lost Movie

I recently watched this movie that had somehow gone undetected by me since it was released in 2004 (!) and  afterwards I could see why there wasn’t a lot of fanfare involved and how it could have gone under the radar.  See this isn’t the long awaited sequel to Anchorman, The Legend of Ron Burgundy.  It’s actually an entire movie edited together from deleted footage and alternate takes from the original movie. 

As far as presentations of deleted scenes go, this is pretty damn cool.  It’d be even more cool to see something similar done with the supposed 4-6hrs of footage shot for Freddy Got Fingered, but I don’t know if that’ll ever happen due to its less than stellar reputation (ultimate edition blu-ray please, you could call it something like “Horse Cock Sized Edition”). The thing is though; when you sit through the movie you’ll quickly realize why a lot of it hit the cutting room floor.  I’d say 80-90% of this thing doesn’t even come close to achieving the utter hilarity and infectiously quotable heights of what was left in the original Anchorman theatrical presentation (and extended unrated cut).  I hate to say this but most of this movie was actually kinda boring, and bordering on painful to sit through.

The alternate takes that were used here are probably the best part, as all of the scenes with the news team assembled work well, but the entire subplot with the gang of revolutionaries/bank robbers, “The Alarm Clock”, falls flat on its face.  It’s easy to see why all of this material was cut because it frankly isn’t funny at all and literally caused me physical discomfort to watch.  I was honestly embarrassed for those actors and can imagine what it must’ve been like to have sat there in the screening room watching the work print and realizing that all the work you did over the last few weeks is fucking terrible on screen. Even though Chuck D. plays one of the robbers, he doesn’t save it.  Now if they’d gotten Flava Flav...


…never mind.
But we do get some good shit in this movie though.  Probably the best part is watching Brick eat a coffee filter “wrap” at lunch that he got from the food bin (aka the garbage).  Other notables would be the news team deciding they need to resort to cannibalism, Champ expressing his love of Ron Burgundy to the extreme while the rest of the news team tries to pretend they can’t hear him, and the scene where Ron goes to see his mentor who tells him he wants to take mother nature to a sleazy motel, shower with her and take her to the bead and do things you can only get away with in Bangkok.   I also thought the bit with Justin Long as the drug addled son of Ed Harken (“Dude! Don’t bogart my joint!”) was good too.

All in all though, after watching this movie I have my doubts that Anchorman will ever be bested by a potential sequel because it was clearly a result of some heavy distillation from a pretty large amount of material which was shot.  The original Anchorman was one of those movies that people either loved or thought was totally stupid and didn’t like at all (I loved it, definitely close to the top of my list of funniest movies ever made right next to Dumb and Dumber).  Wake Up Ron Burgundy was just OK though, an interesting way to see alternate footage but nothing I’d ever sit through again.  If you buy the “Rich Mohoganey” edition of Anchorman on blu-ray you get this as a special feature (on top of an additional hour of deleted scenes not in this, jesus…) and seen in that light I’d say it’s definitely a pretty epic special feature.   But a special feature is just that, a special feature, and not a very good movie.

Kinda disappointed with this one because Anchorman was so awesome, but then I have yet to see another Will Ferrel led comedy that has been able to top it (Step Brothers was funny, but didn’t best it and I thought Talladega Nights was shit other than one or two funny parts).  Check it out if you’re a diehard fan, but just keep in mind what it is and you’ll probably have a better appreciation for it in that light.  Worst case scenario: you’ll hate it and it’ll make the original Anchorman that much better by contrast.