Anchorman: The Legend Of Ron Burgundy 4K UHD Review

Anchorman: The Legend Of Ron Burgundy

Rated PG-13 – for Sexual humor, language and comic violence.
Director: Adam McKay
Starring: Will Ferrell, Christina Applegate, Vince Vaughn
Running Time: 1 hour, 31 minutes
Theatrical Release Date: July 9, 2004
4K UHD Release Date: July 2, 2024 (


Plot Summary

Will Ferrell stars as Ron Burgundy, the top-rated anchorman in San Diego in the ’70s. When feminism marches into the newsroom in the form of ambitious newswoman Veronica Corningstone (Applegate), Ron is willing to play along at first-as long as Veronica stays in her place, covering cat fashion shows, cooking, and other “female” interests. But when Veronica refuses to settle for being eye candy and steps behind the news desk, it’s more than a battle between two perfectly coiffed anchor-persons…it’s war. (from


Film Review

Will Ferrell is best known for his frequent comedic genius when starring as a regular cast member of Saturday Night Live until a couple of years ago. Last year, he proved his worth on the big screen by leading the surprise hit Elf around Christmas time. Due to Elf‘s success, DreamWorks immediately began marketing Anchorman, Ferrell’s follow-up comedy. But while Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy looked to be a potentially silly family summer film, the end result was a film that almost earned itself an R rating.

A month or two before release, Anchorman: The Legend Of Ron Burgundy was re-edited from an R rating down to a more viewer-friendly PG-13 rating. Sadly, whenever a film undergoes this transformation (i.e. 50 First DatesAnger Management, etc), the final cut of the film is usually considerably more adult-oriented than most PG-13 films are intended to be. And while I watched Anchorman, without knowing what really to expect beforehand, I was more than a little disappointed by the content that permeated what could have been another great, silly comedy.

I left the showing of Anchorman with a love/hate feeling towards it. The comedic approach that Ferrell and company took was often quite hilarious. They mixed downright silly and random humor with perfect timing and delivery. But when a really funny moment would pop up, there seemed to be at least two disgustingly crude jokes that would soon follow. While profanity wasn’t too frequent (with a lot of cute non-profane substitutes used instead – like “By the beard of Zeus!” or “Great Odin’s raven!”), there still managed to be 1 standout “F” word, as well as many lewd, sexual coments. The news team behind Ferrell’s Burgundy were three interesting characters, two of which, sadly, were pretty much womanizers. That alone dampened my feelings toward the movie. But when Ferrell wasn’t hamming it up on screen, it was easily Steve Carell who stole every moment he had on screen as his dimwitted weatherman character, Brick, often delivering silly, random lines that helped counteract the junk from the other guys.

There’s very little — if anything — to take seriously about Anchorman. I enjoyed a lot of the random humor (especially a back-alley brawl, and a meeting where the news team tries to stop Veronica Corningstone from being hired), but the bedroom humor was just too much and, quite frankly, highly unnecessary. From several blatant and inescapable shots of a visual erection gag to even a sexual encounter (although not very explicit) between Ron and Veronica (after heavy kissing, we see a psychedelic cartoon called “Pleasure Town” after she asks Ron to take her there. We then see them riding clouds and rainbows – all played for laughs). The humor is often juvenile, but the jokes are too risque. The film just isn’t sure who to target their jokes for, and while we’re expected to truly like these characters, I just don’t see how redeemable they really are.

One other complaint is the editing for the film. Numerous scenes and lines from advertisements and early footage for the film are completely omitted from the movie. A ridiculously funny exchange between Ron and his dog Baxter from early footage has been changed considerably here — to the point that it’s just not nearly as funny as it was originally presented. Other scenes omitted include lines repeated many times in ads. One curious scene from a trailer that is never addressed or even hinted at involved Burgundy taking a bullet for Veronica or walking face-first into a filing cabinet. There is no place those scenes would even fit into this story, so it makes me wonder how they even wandered from the cutting room floor into the ads in the first place. Other shots missing that were in the trailers include a bandaged-up Burgundy emerging from a TV van with Veronica, Ron interacting with people on the street, admiring his own billboard, collapsing the conference table while tackling Veronica, and several others.

But Anchorman is nearly a waste because, while some jokes are roll-on-the-floor funny (with key scenes featuring surprise cameos that are just priceless), it’s just too vulgar overall. Seeing it edited will cut out a considerable amount, but you’ll see some of the best parts without having to wade through the junk to get to the funniest moments. It’s a shame because it could have been a really fun movie.

In conclusion, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy indeed had its moments, but vulgarity and crude humor muddied up what could have been one big silly and fun film. If you want a good clean laugh this summer, Shrek 2 is still your best bet.

– John DiBiase(reviewed: 7/10/04; edited 7/1/24)


4K UHD Review

It’s crazy to think Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy is now twenty years old. The debut 4K UHD release of the film arrives just in time for its anniversary, and it comes packaged with a couple Blu-Ray discs filled with previously released bonus features.

Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy in 4K UHD – So how does the 2004 movie look in 4K UHD? I have to say I wasn’t super impressed by it. Now, I’m sure if we did a side-by-side comparison of the original DVD release with the 4K, we’d see that this version is world’s better, but the Blu-Ray transfer of the movie was still pretty good. According to the details provided for this 4K release, however, it does say the film was “remastered.” I mean, yeah, it looks pretty dang good, but there’s definitely some noticeable grain here and there, too. It’s crisp at times, but not throughout the entire film. I will say, however, this movie is a colorful one, and it really pops in 4K. So even if it isn’t a mind-blowing 4K transfer, it’s still the best the movie has ever looked.

Now, while the theatrical version of Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy is presented in 4K, keep in mind that the Extended Version and the “Lost Movie,” Wake Up Ron Burgundy, are only in HD on the Blu-Ray discs. It’s still nice to have the latter in HD, but those hoping everything will be in 4K might be disappointed. The 4K disc actually has zero bonus features on it, so that’s something to keep in mind.

When I read over my 2004 review of Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy above, I found it funny that I made sure to complain about a batch of missing scenes. Those scenes – most of them, if not all of them – are actually part of Wake Up Ron Burgundy: The Lost Movie. That film is basically the deleted scenes and an entirely deleted alternate plot cut together as a new, additional Anchorman story. It uses alternate jokes and takes seen in The Legend of Ron Burgundy to help fill in the gaps, and uses them to stitch together the alternate story into one sloppy, albeit enjoyable, bonus movie. One of my favorite sequences in all of the Anchorman versions is in this “lost movie,” where Brick claims he’s eating a falafel hot dog in the station’s cafeteria, but Ron points out that it’s “a used coffee filter with cigarette butts on it.” There’s a bit where Ron “wrecks the moment” tacked on after the credits for The Legend of Ron Burgundy, but a variation of that joke is also perfectly executed in this sequence as well. All in all, the “lost movie” isn’t much more than a feature-length collection of deleted bits, but it’s still pretty fun.

Meanwhile, the “Extended Version” is Unrated and is basically a more rated R version of The Legend of Ron Burgundy (Although, I think, at one time, there was actually an R-rated cut of the movie AND an Unrated cut). This version includes about 3 or so more “F” words, a few more uses of the “S” word, some additional crude jokes, and a scene where Ron fantasizes about married life with Veronica and we see her wearing only an apron, showing quite a bit of “side boob” in several shots. Overall, I would recommend just skipping this cut.

Sadly, I have to admit that the Theatrical Version of Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy has become kind of a guilty pleasure over the past 20 years. It has quite a few memorable, quotable lines in it, and it really has an incredible ensemble cast. I do still wish it was less crude overall – and it is by no means a family film – but Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy had held up quite well over the years and has become a modern comedy classic.

Here’s a list of the special features, which I believe were all previously released:

Blu-ray Disc 1

  • Theatrical and Extended versions of the film branched
  • Commentary by Adam McKay, Will Ferrell, Lou Rawls, Andy Richter, Kyle Gass, Paul Rudd, David Koechner, and Christina Applegate
  • Deleted & Extended Scenes
  • Bloopers
  • “Afternoon Delight” Music Video
  • ESPN SportsCenter Audition – Ron Burgundy

Blu-ray Disc 2

  • Wake Up Ron Burgundy: The Lost Movie
  • Intro-Commentary with Will Ferrell and Aaron Zimmerman
  • PSA
  • Award Speech
  • Raw Footage “Good Takes”
  • “Afternoon Delight” Recording Session
  • Interviews
  • Specials
  • Cast Auditions
  • Table Read 6/2/03
  • Rehearsals
  • Playback Video
  • Commercial Break
  • Trailers


– John DiBiase(reviewed: 7/1/24)


Parental Guide: Content Summary

. Sex/Nudity: Very heavy… There is an abundance of suggestive and blunt sexual comments and advances. Here are just a few examples: We see Ron in a small bathing suit at a party and women in small bikinis. Champ makes lewd suggestive noises and motions about wanting to have sex with Veronica. Champ gropes Veronica’s chest, pretending to be an accident (before asking her out); She then punches him in the groin. Brick repeats a crude pickup line to Veronica about her joining a party in his pants (but being dimwitted he doesn’t understand what he’s saying and fumbles with the question). After Ron hits on Veronica, she uncomfortably points out a noticeable erection in his pants. We then see several shots of an exaggerated bulge in his pants that he tries to excuse as an illusion. There is a sexual encounter between Ron and Veronica that begins with heavy kissing that follows with a bizarre, psychedelic cartoon called “Pleasure Town” after she asks Ron to take her there. We then see them riding clouds, unicorns, etc, insinuating their sexual experience (all played for laughs). We don’t see any actual sexual acts, but see then lying in bed afterwards with her smoking a cigarette in a nightgown and him shirtless. The news team sings “Afternoon Delight” which is a theme about love but is also a double meaning. Veronica makes a comment about her being good at several things including “screwing” that leads to a joke about that. Champ and Brian try to distract Veronica while she is reporting and they make sexual motions and we then see Brian in his briefs with Champ pointing at them (we see later extended moments from this scene in the outtakes too). Ron tries to embarrass Veronica by introducing her as “T*ts McGee”. Many other comments and references are made during the course of the film…
. Vulgarity/Language: 1 “f” word (and what looks like 1 mouthed one from Wes Mantooth), 3 “g*dd*mn,” 1 “S” word, 1 “J-sus”, 2 “d*ck”, 3 “t*ts”, 9 “d*mn”, 3 “b*tch”, 9 “h*ll”, 5 “a” words, 1 “cr*p”, 2 S.O.B., 7 “G-d”
. Alcohol/Drugs: Ron says he loves scotch and we see him drinking several times, even on the job. Ron appears to be drunk at a bar. Many people drink during the film.
. Blood/Gore: A biker has some bloody scrapes on his head; Ron has a scrape on his face; A man’s arm is cut off with a machete during a brawl and we see the dramatically fake bloody stump, but it remains somewhat gory-looking.
. Violence: Comic violence. A biker accidentally wipes out on a freeway, an animal is thrown off a bridge; Veronica beats Ron with a TV antennae and throws a printer at him; A man’s arm is cut off; A man’s arm is ripped off by a bear; We see a back alley brawl with many different weapons and one person is killed by a trident (but all violence is played for laughs)

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