They got the band, er, news team, back together!  Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues brings almost all of the original cast from the first movie -- and several of the jokes -- for more relentless stupidity that's often pretty funny.

Anchorman 2 is about the ups and downs of Ron Burgundy (Will Ferrell), the dim-wittes, self-important television newsman, in 1980.  The movie stars with Ron in the dumps, as his wife Veronica Corningstone (Christina Applegate) gets a lead anchor position while Ron gets fired; they also separate, with Veronica getting their 7-year-old son Walter (Judah Nelson).

Ron is down in the dumps until he gets an offer from producer Freddie Shapp (Dylan Baker) to join the new 24-hour news network GNN.  Ron agrees, reassembling his old news team: investigative reporter and would-be ladies' man Brian Fontana (Paul Rudd); sportscaster who knows nothing about sports and everything about racism Champ Kind (David Koechner); and thoroughly idiotic weatherman Brick Tamland (Steve Carell, stealing every scene he's in just like in the first movie).  Together they plan to take cable news and New York by storm.
There are obstacles and new characters, of course.  Jack Lime (James Marsden) is the pretty-boy anchor who's an immediate rival to Ron.  Linda Jackson (Meagan Good) is Ron's new boss who is put off by his racism (when he first meets her he can't stop saying "black") but falls for him anyway.  Kench Allenby (Josh Lawson) is the Australian owner of GNN who wants to kill a story that could hurt his Koala Airlines.  And Chani (Kristen Wiig) is Brick's intellectual equal and love interest.  Along the way there's a bottle-fed baby shark, the world's worst blind man, a near-catfight, and the invention of the news people want to hear instead of the news they need to hear.

Anchorman 2 follows very closely in the footsteps of the original (and towards the end, the sequel has many of the same jokes as the original).  Will Ferrell's Ron Burgundy may make a journey of self-discovery, but he spends most of the movie blurting out inappropriate things, and occasionally making an accurate comment on how ridiculous something is.  The cast is good, but they haven't really changed anything since the first movie.  And even though the sequel moves the action from the 1970s to the 1980s, the only change in time is in the soundtrack music.  There are plenty of funny moments in Anchorman 2, from the big battle at the end to Ferrell's over-the-top character; but in the end, Anchorman 2 sticks a little too closely to the original.

Overall grade: B-
Reviewed by James Lynch

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