Anchorman (2004)
Dreamworks Home Entertainment
Cast: Will Ferrell, Christina Applegate, Paul Rudd, Steve Carell
Extras: Commentary Track, Featurette, Interviews, Bloopers, Deleted Scenes, Music Video

Will Ferrell is on a roll these days, showing up in a number of great movies and the Saturday Night Live alumni seems on the right track to reach the same feature film success like some of his predecessors. In ’Anchorman’ he plays Ron Burgundy, a 70s television news anchor in San Diego, riding high on a wave of self-adulation, chauvinism and disrespect for anyone but himself. But just when he thought he had it all, the network brings in Veronica Corningstone (Christina Applegate) as a segment journalist. Threatened by the mere existence of a woman in a news room Burgundy and his team members immediately try everything in their power to run her down and get rid of her, but before you know it, Ron actually falls in love with her – for the first time in his life. But still, he sees her more as a sex object than a real woman with career goals, and when one day he shows up late for his newscast, he learns that the network put Veronica in front of the camera and made her the first female news anchor ever! What an outrage…

Dreamworks is presenting the film in its theatrical 1.85:1 widescreen aspect ratio on this DVD in a transfer that is enhanced for 16×9 TV sets. The image is generally clear and free of blemishes and holds a good level of detail. No grain is evident and color reproduction is rich and without over saturation. Black levels are solid with good fall-off, creating an image with strong contrasts. No edge-enhancement is distracting form the viewing experience and no compression artifacts are noticeable either.

The audio on the release is a 5.1 channel Dolby Digital track, complemented by a Dolby Surround track. Audio is clear and has a wide frequency response with good basses and clear high ends. The dynamic range is also good, as you’d expect from a new title such as this.

A commentary track featuring Will Ferrell and director Adam McKay is included on the DVD making for some great spontaneous moments without losing the information value. Fans of Ferrell definitely should check this commentary out.

As extras, the DVD contains a series of bloopers and deleted scenes of varying quality. Some are funny and entertaining, others less so. A series of ’ron Burgundy’ features are also included ,suc has his interviews at the MTV Movie Awards, his ESPN audition, and much more. All of them are actually quite funny and particularly the live interview in front of an audience shows Ferrell’s prowess as an impromptu comedian.

The featurette ’Making of Anchorman’ and the music video ’Afternoon Delight’ round out the release.

’Anchorman’ is a good Will Ferrell comedy. It has some gross-out elements and it is chauvinistic through and trough, but that’s part of the fun. It never really dips into the toilet and also has some moments of comedic genius that always made Ferrell such a memorable SNL performer. Add to that Christina Applegate’s great performance and cameo’s by a lot of fellow comedians and you have a film that is thoroughly enjoyable.