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Friday, May 18, 2007

Hot Fuzz (2007)

Edgar Wright’s latest film Hot Fuzz is a small, clever homage to big dumb action movies. Hot Fuzz will undoubtedly draw comparison to Wright’s 2004 film Shaun of the Dead. Like Shaun, Hot Fuzz suffers from odd pacing and an ending that seems to drag out forever. Hot Fuzz is so rich with sight gags, one-liners and great performances from some of Britain’s best actors (Jim Broadbent, Bill Nighy, Stuart Wilson and Timothy Dalton, to name a few) that the l21 minute running time is enjoyable more often than not.

Simon Pegg plays Nicholas Angel, the best police officer in London. He is so good, in fact, that his coworkers conspire to get him transferred to the small town of Sandford. He is partnered with Danny Butterman (Nick Frost), the pudgy, slow-witted son of the Police Chief who desperately wants the policing business to be less about paperwork and more about car chases. Nicholas slowly begins to discover that something is rotten in the town of Sandford; a series of mysterious deaths point towards a serial killer (or two). Taking notes from American action films such as Point Break, Lethal Weapon, Commando, Men in Black, Chinatown, Bad Boys, Straw Dogs and even He-Man, Angel and Butterman step over the thin blue line and take down the evil forces in the town in a truly breathtaking artillery display. The reason behind the murders is incredibly funny and oh-so British—any fans of the BBC mystery series Midsomer Murders will especially appreciate it. All in all, Hot Fuzz accomplishes its goals of entertaining us while analyzing, in its own shallow way, what clichés are needed entertain an American audience. Hats off to you, Mr. Wright—I’ll never watch Point Break the same way again.


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