Anchorman 2

FARGO new Blu release

Welcome back to This Week In Discs! If you see something you like, click on the title to buy it from Amazon. Fargo Jerry Lundegaard (William H. Macy) is a used car salesman with money issues. He arranges to have his wife kidnapped in the hopes that her overbearing father will pay a ransom, she’ll be released, and everyone will come out a winner. Things don’t work out quite the way he planned though, and in addition to two madmen (Steve Buscemi, Peter Stormare) holding his wife he’s also got a persistent cop (Frances McDormand) on his tail. The Coen brothers’ sixth feature film was their first to reach a wide audience, and that’s due as much to its fantastic sense of humor as it is its tremendous cast. It tells an incredibly dark and violent tale, but it does so in such a marvelously sweet and humorous way. Macy gets most of the funny lines, but McDormand runs a close second with a performance filled with genuine congeniality. This is actually Fargo‘s fourth appearance on Blu-ray, and by all accounts it’s identical to the 2009 release. This one has better cover art, but the special features are all the same. [Blu-ray extras: Commentary with Roger Deakins, featurettes, trailer]

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tiko and shark

Much of Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues is more of the same from Ron Burgundy and the gang. As the lead character, Will Ferrell does the news, does some ladies and has a few meltdowns. Brick says idiotic things, Champ says inappropriate things and Brian Fantana has a special cabinet alluding to his assumed sexual prowess. Oh, and Veronica Corningstone is back and mad at Ron again. There is even another cameo-filled brawl. But there are a few things added in that we didn’t see in Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, like Ferrell wrestling with a shark that calls to mind scenes with a cougar and a bear in Talladega Nights and Semi-Pro, respectively. The sequel reminded me of some other movies besides those in the filmography of its star. Sometimes this was the intention of the filmmakers via a direct reference. Other times it was just the usual wandering of my brain making relevant associations. Occasionally the reminders came externally from another writer’s comparison. Regardless of where this week’s list of recommendations came from, I’ve wound up with a nice variety of titles about broadcast journalism and keeping sharks as pets plus selections highlighting some of the cast’s other work worth checking out. Queue them up for your holiday week, why don’t you. As always, the following may involve SPOILERS as some of the titles below are linked to specific plot points of the movie.

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The Wolf of Wall Street

After years of anticipation, the wait is nearly over. Worry no longer: 47 Ronin is finally coming to theaters. The Keanu Reeves vs. CG monsters movie somehow wound up with a Christmas release, and it’s one of the most bizarre Christmas releases in recent history. Universal either has immense confidence in the film or is blatantly dumping the mega-expensive picture into a snow-covered grave. Thankfully, 47 Ronin isn’t the only movie you can see this wonderful Holiday season. If it turns out to be a dud, you can watch 47 Ronin director Carl Rinsch‘s collection of fantastic commercials and short films online for free instead, and if that still doesn’t do it for you, then there are nine other films for your must-see list this month.

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Anchorman 2 Baxter

“Black Friday” sales have spilled over into Thanksgiving Day. Amazon just announced that it wants to set the stage for the robot war by piloting commodity-delivery drones to your home. The holiday shopping season has literally become a deadly event. Consumer culture is out of control and omnipresent, rampantly breaking through boundaries of common sense, private space, and basic human decency. Yet on the everyday, experiential scale, consumer culture seems, more than ever before, like no big deal. Perhaps we have, for better or worse, collectively accepted it as an inevitable part of living. We expressed shock that the NSA was data-mining its citizens without any evidence of consistent legal parameters, yet only the occasional TED speaker is concerned that similar practices persist on behalf of marketers who feed from the social media we volunteer our lives to. Public schools are looking to private sponsors to fill in the funding gaps left by austerity. Bookshelves are stocked with arguments that our purchases – not our civic engagement, social awareness, or self-determination – have become the major constitutive factor in developing our individual sense of self. To these, we don’t really seem to mind. However, one place that blatant product-hawking is held accountable, in which peddling is met with a rattle of dismissal and rejection rather than tacit acceptance, is decent movies. Until now.

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garth

Once upon a time, any artist who took money in order to hock product for some sort of corporate entity was widely considered to be a sell-out and a shill by the cultural elite. There was a shame in lending your talents to an advertisement or allowing an outside interest to have a say in your work. A shame that led to things like Wayne’s World mocking the rampant product placement that goes on in much of studio filmmaking, or A-list actors appearing in TV commercials in Japan, because the payday on those things is too good to pass up, but they know that they’d have their status as a celebrity diminished if they appeared in ads that ran in the US. On the other hand, in a world where the people who make our entertainment are increasingly unable to make a profit from their work due to things like online pirating, dwindling ticket sales in theaters, all-you-can-watch subscription services, and DVR devices that allow consumers to skip through commercials, we’re rapidly entering a reality where filmmakers are going to have to find new ways to keep the things that they make profitable, and it’s likely they’re going to turn to corporate interests to get that little boost of income needed to keep television series and feature films out of the red and in the black. As the interests of art and products merge, soon we could reach a point of singularity where we can’t even tell the difference between […]

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Anchorman

Just in case you haven’t heard, Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues is storming into theaters this December and bringing the Channel 4 News Team back into our lives. With the announcement of the sequel to 2004′s beloved Anchorman came a slow but steady progession of trailers and fun marketing tactics that only amplified the excitement surrounding another round of Ron Burgundy. First came Will Ferrell visiting the set of Conan in character as Ron Burgundy in March to play a little jazz flute and announce the sequel. Clearly, it was delightful and people flipped their lids when they spotted that finely-crafted red suit hit the stage. In the months since March, the buzz grew with several trailers and the usual release of stills and one-sheets. But then came the constant in-character promotions and endorsements. Have we reached peak Burgundy saturation?

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Anchorman 2 Shark

Ron Burgundy! Yes. The latest trailer for Anchorman 2 is pitch perfect in its racist, chauvinist, animal-loving majesty. Trying to rise through the milk-soaked ashes, Burgundy and the team attempt to make their mark on the world of worldwide news. It looks like they’ll be facing all sorts of progressive ideas and a handful of ball checks. Plus, Ben & Jerry’s just announced they’d be making a Scotchy Scotch Scotch ice cream flavor in honor of the movie, so daydream about that while this:

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Ron Burgundy

Okay, it’s probably paperback, but if the marketing team behind Anchorman: The Legend Continues is smart, they’ll make this vision happen. As part of the viral (written?) campaign for the long-awaited sequel to 2004′s Anchorman, Random House’s Crown Archetype will be teaming up with the legendary broadcaster from the Action 4 News Team to release a memoir entitled Let Me Off at the Top!: My Classy Life and Other Musings. The memoir promises never-before told details about Ron Burgundy’s (Will Ferrell) personal life, childhood, and meteoric rise to fame as one of the most successful and talented anchormen to ever sit behind a desk and bring you the damn news. And since it’s Burgundy doing the writing, it’s pretty much guaranteed that he won’t skip any of the juicy details when talking about the ladies, either. It’s a bit of a strange move to release a book to promote a films; it’s not something you see much these days outside of kids’ movies, but it’s almost weird enough to work. I’m at least a little curious to see what Burgundy’s childhood was like, or how he became a jazz flute master.

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680x478

Ron Burgundy has clearly blown into his mighty conch and summoned his trusty news team to assemble in the 1980′s, if these stills from Anchorman: The Legend Continues are to be believed. Will Ferrell is back as Burgundy, and it’s unclear whether he and Veronica Corningstone (Christina Applegate) will ever be married on top of that mountain with garlands of fresh herbs, but they certainly look happy traipsing down the streets of New York City together. When you survive a bear attack together, you can survive anything as a couple. The whole team, including Brick (Steve Carell), Brian (Paul Rudd), and Champ (David Koechner) have left their local station in San Diego for a revolutionary 24-hour news channel in the Big Apple called…GNN. This is the 80′s, so the overwhelming wall of news coverage that we’re used to isn’t a thing yet. And these are the brave men (and woman) who are being trusted to bring it to the world. From the second image, it’s clear that Burgundy is still their faithful leader. Also, take a moment to just soak in their early 80′s fashion. Good to know that Champ’s cowboy hat survived the 70′s. Take a look at the second still after the break.

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Anchorman 2 Poster

The world is about to meet Ron Burgundy. Again. Anchorman 2 hits theaters this Christmas, and even though there’s a second Anchorman movie already exists, this one still gets a “2″ in its name.  This time, Ron, Brick, Champ and Brian are re-teaming to polyester their way through the 1980s with the prospect of a 24-hour news channel dangling overhead. They’ve teased with images and one-liners and appearances on late night talk shows, but now the first trailer reveals that — just as he evolved for a world where women were empowered — Ron is learning a lot about race relations as his legend continues:

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Brick Anchorman 2 Teaser

We’ve got another half year before our eyes, ears and funny bones get ahold of Anchorman: The Legend Continues. The highly anticipated sequel is not even finished filming — though it is close to wrapping up, with shooting moved from Atlanta to New York City this week. To further whet our appetites, and probably to give official supplement to all the set photos of cameo appearances being regularly leaked, Paramount has unveiled a new trailer for the movie. You still won’t find any footage from The Legend Continues, however. Like the teasers we got a whole year ago, this is a simple promo  featuring our four favorite newsmen saying “something fun about the movie.” Well, except for Brick, of course, who doesn’t understand what to do. Again. He gives us some advice on how to avoid being mistaken for a pedophile and wishes us a belated happy Easter. The holiday greeting is kind of fitting, though, we’ll give him that. Narrator “Bill Lawson” introduces the latest teaser talking about returned figures such as Jesus and Jay-Z. Easter pertains to the former, obviously. See, Brick isn’t dumb after all. But Ron Burgandy sure is mean. He calls us fat face. And he thinks we’re going to come see his movie after such an insult? Okay, we will. We can’t wait to hear him call us names and for Champ and Brian to intoxicate us with their alcohol breath and snake venom cologne, respectively.

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scott

What is Casting Couch? It’s back to give you another healthy dose of casting news. If you don’t like spoilers, then don’t continue forward, because we’ve got some big time spoilers concerning a couple of Anchorman 2 cameos. Craig Robinson, Rob Corddry, and Clark Duke are all ready to don their swimsuits to go for another soak in the Hot Tub Time Machine, but they have a problem. It turns out that the star of the first film, John Cusack, doesn’t want to join them. Never fear though, because The Wrap is reporting that Party Down and Parks and Recreation star Adam Scott has agreed to step into the role of the straight man for Hot Tub Time Machine 2, and he’s generally way more likable than Cusack these days anyway. What will this sequel have in store for Scott and the original crew? Will they perhaps, this time, go back in time to the 90s, so that we can get a host of jokes about slap bracelets and Zubaz pants? The head spins with possibilities.

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Brad Pitt

What is Casting Couch? It’s casting news. A bunch of it. All in one place. Today we’ve got the short list of young ladies who may be playing Cinderella in Kenneth Branagh’s upcoming Disney film, among other things. People seemed to love watching Brad Pitt don military garb and do a World War II movie for Quentin Tarantino, so it stands to reason they should be willing to line up to watch him go period again for David Ayer. According to Heat Vision, the director is looking to sign the star for his upcoming WWII-set project, Fury. If he becomes official, he’ll be taking the lead role of the film, which is an ensemble piece that will follow the 5-man crew of an American tank. More specifically, it follows the 5-man crew of an American tank in the waning days of the war, as they come across a battered and desperate division of German soldiers. Ayer wrote the film and sold it to QED on spec, which is going to start to look like a smart investment on their part if a star as recognizable as Pitt becomes official.

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Shatner vs. Gorn

Tonight’s edition of Movie News After Dark is a Friday free-for-all. William Shatner fights Gorn, WonderCon explodes, Ron Burgundy reproduces, we learn lessons of Westeros and I sit the Iron Throne in defiance of the North Korean threat to central Texas.

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Daniel Cudmore

What is Casting Couch? It’s a rundown of all the casting news we missed over the weekend. Keep reading for updates on new jobs for young actors like Aml Ameen and…Nick Jonas? Squeal! Bryan Singer’s shock and awe campaign of constantly keeping X-Men: Days of Future Past in the headlines through information leaked via his Twitter account seems to be paying off. Most recently he teased us all by tweeting a picture of his casts’ head shots tacked up to a wall, a picture that ComingSoon analyzed and discovered secrets in. Turns out the pic gives us three more names who are in the movie. Not only do we now know that Daniel Cudmore, who played Colossus in X2 and The Last Stand, is coming to turn metallic and smash things again, but we also know that Twilight vet Booboo Stewart has joined the pic in an undisclosed role, and that Chinese actress Fan Bingbing will be playing the mutant teleporter Blink. Those sure are some fun names to type.

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Harrison Ford

What is Casting Couch? It’s your handy roundup of news stories regarding which actors managed to land gigs over the weekend. Today we have an update on what’s going on with Guardians of the Galaxy as well as news of who gets to be Johnny Depp’s latest leading lady. Film fans have been keeping a close eye on Harrison Ford in recent weeks, just waiting for the official confirmation that he’s going to be reprising his legendary role as Han Solo in J.J. Abrams’ new Star Wars movie. Today we all got a curve ball thrown at us though. While it’s looking more and more likely that Ford will indeed be revisiting his legendary role, it also appears that he’s not done making new legends. THR is reporting that he’s now the latest name to sign on to Anchorman 2, where he’ll be playing a “legendary newscaster” who’s being likened to Tom Brokaw. Given that description, one can’t help but imagine a perfectly quaffed Ford smelling of tanned leather, scotch, and stale tobacco, and wonder if this character is going to be a rival to Will Ferrell’s Ron Burgundy, or possibly a mentor figure. Either way, it should be interesting to see Ford going for something this broadly comedic. You know, given how grumpy he is.

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H

What is Casting Couch? It’s a compiling of all the day’s most notable casting news. Today we’ve got updates on what big book adaptations the Harry Potter kids are moving on to next, among many other things. You better sit down for this one. Ever since genre fans got that glimpse of a post-apocalyptic world where robots were in charge and humans lived in little pockets of resistance cells in James Cameron’s The Terminator, they’ve been clamoring to get a proper robot war movie. Well, that may never happen, but Matt Reeves’ upcoming Dawn of the Planet of the Apes sequel might give them the next best thing: a proper ape war. Coming Soon has word that Dawn is mostly going to be about one of these pockets of human rebels fighting against a world that’s now controlled by the apes, and perhaps most excitingly, they’ve learned that Gary Oldman has signed on to play the leader of this human resistance. This is fitting, because Oldman is so awesome he probably really would be the best guy to put in charge if super-intelligent apes tried to take over the world. He could make them back down with just the authority in his voice.

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Bradley Cooper

What is Casting Couch? It’s a compilation of casting news that has word of a new project for Zero Dark Thirty’s Jason Clarke as well as a look at Johnny Depp’s upcoming schedule. Read on. Bradley Cooper’s ego has gotten so big ever since he was nominated for an Oscar that he’s now decided he wants to take David Hasselhoff’s place as Germany’s favorite celebrity. According to Deadline, the Silver Linings Playbook actor has signed on to star in an English language adaptation of Kokowaah, which was Germany’s highest grossing film of 2011. The basic story here is that of a successful author and swinging bachelor who suddenly discovers he has an 8-year-old daughter from a brief fling he engaged in years ago. Cooper also has a producing credit on the film, and might even be stepping into the director’s chair to make this his directorial debut, but this is a casting report and not a feed Bradley Cooper’s ego report, so let’s move on.

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James Marsden

What is Casting Couch? It’s your handy one stop destination for news about what all of your favorite and least favorite actors are up to next. Today we’ve got news about Anne Hathaway’s latest excuse to sing and what Adam Sandler’s next excuse to get paid to go on vacation with a beautiful actress will be. When James Marsden first caught international attention, it was as the stone-faced and charisma-free Cyclops in Bryan Singer’s first X-Men movie. People didn’t have much love for him back then. But since then he’s shown in things like Enchanted and Death at a Funeral that he’s not so bad when he’s letting his figurative hair down and getting a little goofy. That’s a good thing, because now we don’t have to meet Deadline’s report that he’s just become the latest name to join the Anchorman 2 cast with annoyed groans. Apparently Marsden will be playing Ron Burgundy’s rival news anchor, which sounds like quite a bit of fun, because Marsden can do smug pretty well.

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Peter Dinklage

What is Casting Couch? It’s the casting news roundup that has news about what the lovely Marion Cotillard is going to be lovelying up with her lovely self next. It seems like Bryan Singer’s plan for promoting his upcoming X-Men sequel, X-Men: Days of Future Past, is to leak a little bit of news about it on his Twitter account every day between now and when it actually gets released. The latest bone he’s throwing us is that Game of Thrones star Peter Dinklage has joined his rapidly-expanding cast. What role Dinklage will be playing Singer hasn’t yet revealed, which, of course, has sent the entire Internet scrambling to see how many Marvel characters they can name that might even slightly resemble a dwarf. From obscure Canadian heroes to Captain America villains, they’ve covered them all, but nobody has yet to predict anything that makes any sense. Here’s an interesting prediction to throw out there: maybe he’s just going to play some dude? Variety, however, seems to think he’s playing the villain. 

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published: 04.19.2014
A-
published: 04.19.2014
B+
published: 04.18.2014
C-
published: 04.18.2014
C

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