A big "Yarrp" to the very English action movie Hot Fuzz. No, it's not as good as Shaun of the Dead, but it's not really a disappointment either even if the laugh count is a lot lower. Much of the film really isn't that funny, yet it gets by for much of its running time on sheer enthusiastic likeability. At times Edgar Wright's direction tries a little too hard and few of the many cameos have much to do (though a heavily disguised Cate Banchett makes a real virtue of her anonymity and Peter Jackson does turn up as a psycho Santa), but it's one of the very few films where the fun that the filmmakers seem to be having actually seems to translate to the finished product. As with Shaun, it's an inspired bit of gene-splicing, in this case a wonderful yet surprisingly logical cross between Agatha Christie and Jerry Bruckheimer, with a series of very English crimes - motivated by nothing so sordid as monetary gain or as logical as a criminal conspiracy but rather by something infinitely more respectable - culminating in 20 minutes of virtuoso mayhem that sees Simon Pegg and Nick Frost shooting up the kind of quaint and picturesque village more used to the genteel Sunday teatime likes of The Vicar of Dibley and All Creatures Great and Small. Even the casting of the local Neighbourhood Watch is truly inspired, consisting of (among others), James Bond (Timothy Dalton, whose `supermarket slasher' gets my vote for Best Supporting Actor this year), Callan (Edward Woodward), Bellocq from Raiders of the Lost Ark (Paul Freeman), the nanny from The Omen (Billie Whitelaw) and the villain from Lethal Weapon 3 (Stuart Wilson). And there's been some real thought put into the disposal of the bad guys, which mirror the various murders in gruesomely exaggerated fashion via bear traps, model villages and sea mines. Very pleasing indeed - even the extras on the DVD are unusually entertaining. Yarrp.
on 26 August 2007
Hot Fuzz is an excellent film. I have yet to be dissapointed with this team's work. Hot Fuzz continues the trend of Shaun of the Dead where it pays homage to a genre while creating and developing its own characters and story.
In Hot Fuzz, Simon Pegg is a good London cop - so good he is promoted to seargant in a small town where he is supposedly useless because nothing ever happens. His partner is the inept Danny, played by Nick Frost - who is just as funny and a bit more useful than he was in Shaun of the Dead (well, he doesn't screw up as much). Cameos read like a who's who of british comedy with Steve Coogan, Martin Freeman, and Bill Bailey making appearances.
A lot of reviewers have stated that this just isn't funny. It's funny, but Pegg and Wright, in penning the script have gone for some big in jokes, carefully inserted that to the regular movie goer, may go over their head. There's also a type of humour here that not every film goer will get. Part of Simon Pegg's success as a comedian is his dry, deadpan delivery. In many ways he reminds me of a young Bill Murray.
This film doesn't seem as successful because the action genre is just not as much in our current mindset as the horror genre. So one liners and fun dialogue exchangers are replaced by a lot of visual gags. Unfortunately, this means the characters aren't quite as developed as they are in Shaun of the Dead. This isn't a big deal - it's an action movie after all - but it was one of the charms of both Spaced and Shaun.
The finale of the film (possible spoiler) however, features a pitch perfect action scene. Here, the filmakers show their range by creating a brilliant action sequence that also has many of their trademark hilarious moments. It's not Shaun funny, but it still shows these guys have a lot more up there sleeves. So what's next - sci fi? western?
on 12 May 2008
I think I must be the only person in the universe who has not seen Shaun of the Dead. This was my first Pegg experience and I dare not watch anything prior for fear of "ruining him" for me...For those who did not like this film because it was too "Arnie" with all of the firepower etc...all I can say is that was the point. This is a spoof! I am not sure how I managed to rent this movie because I am not usually a fan of the "anihilation movie" (I think the goose probably had a lot to do with it...) but I am very glad I did! I do agree that there was more gore than I had expected (sleepy village amid rolling hills...you have to reckon the goose is going to be the most dangerous thing our hero faces, no?) and that there probably should be some sort of warning. If, however, there will be no kids around and you feel that you have been properly warned about the gore, do NOT pass up this "hot" and "fuzzy" experience!
on 20 August 2007
Alas, if only England was like Working Title's spin on it, we could play tennis with Kirsten Dunst while she winks suggestively, we could drunkenly stroll to The Lucky Boat to meet andie McDowell, we could leisurely stroll through Notting Hill to the strains of Bill Withers... It's a sepia tinted world to be sure.
We now come to their latest project Hot Fuzz, the rustic English opener is spliced with a Lethal Weapon like second half. The amiable first half sees Sgt Nicholas Angel(an excellent Simon Webb) golden boy Police "Officer" a pollitically correct dot the i s and cross the ts anal retentive who gets despatched to the country by his superiors (Martin Freeman, Steve Coogan and Bill Nighy all in excellent form) because he is making his colleagues look inept in comparison. He winds up in sleepy Sandford, Gloucestershire where he is not expected to make any waves. The town is idyllic with an exceptionally low crime rate but a very high accident rate! Something isn't quite right from Timothy Dalton's smarmy Supermarket owner to Edward Woodward's over zealous community liason. People are unexpectedly slaughtered by a cloak wearing psychopath...but is it why we think?
Sgt Angel is twinned up with Danny (Nick Frost) an oafish overweight idiot and son of the local Police chief Jim Broadbent.
The film is drenched with so many references that it becomes almost original. The village is reminiscent of the Daily Mail's Middle England that it bemoans is disappearing. This is crossed with Stepford Wives overtones. The second half is gun toting brilliance and reeks of Dirty Harry and Martin Riggs. On the way are hilarious interludes such as the village hall production of Romeo + Juliet. Stephen Merchant turns up in a hilarious cameo where he describes a missing swan which has escaped( long neck, orange beak etc..)If only Timothy Dalton exuded some of this sheer class whilst 007 he would have undoubtedly been my favourite Bond. Violence is sporadic but schlockily scary. The film is generally hiarious and worth a watch
on 22 October 2010
Having seen Shaun of the Dead I knew that this team could come up with a good movie, but I wasn't prepared for just how good Hot Fuzz really is. The script is very well written, with some witty dialogue and plot twists that came out of the blue. There are also some roll on the floor funny scenes as well.
But the script is only part of what works in Hot Fuzz. The cast is fantastic. I can't recall a single person in the cast who was less than very good. Timothy Dalton, in particular, seemed to be having a great time with his role. Of course, Simon Pegg was simply outstanding as Nicholas Angel. He could have carried the movie even with a mediocre cast, but with the first rate cast around him he comes across even better.
Then we really should discuss the direction. In a word - WOW! Edgar Wright directed the thing with such a dichotomy in styles it could have been a recipe for disaster, but instead the collision of two distinctly different worlds (big city, big budget action movie, and small town comedy) is handled extremely deftly. His direction on each angle of the story makes it seem like that would be his specialty. That alone would make for an impressive movie, but you add the stellar direction with the cast and the script and you end up with something even greater.
Consider this movie HIGHLY recommended.
(And I forgot to mention that it looks great on Blu Ray, too!)
on 25 June 2007
What can I say? Absolutley fantastic! Simon Pegg and Nick Frost are a superb comedy double act and the director of the film, Edgar Wright, deserves a whole heap of praise and a lot more money to work with on his next movie. The jokes, sly references, one-liners and visual gags are great - well timed and equally well delivered. And what a cast! Edward Woodward, Paul Freeman, Jim Broadbent, Billie Whitelaw and not to mention the wonderful Timothy Dalton. I haven't seen him in a film this good for ages. The film itself is a manic mix of Bad Boys, The Bill, The Wicker Man and the League of Gentlemen. The final shoot-out/car chase/fist fight is brilliantly done. Its great to see, that after Shaun of the Dead, Pegg and Wright didn't just go for the easy option and do a re-hash, instead bringing us a new plot with fresh characters. Some critics out there (I'm talking to you, TOTAL FILM) have had the arrogance to suggest that Pegg should have played a character 'more like Shaun' (even though after Shaun, they hoped he wouldn't play the same kind of character over and over again) and that Edgar Wright 'could have a great career', if he decided to make either comedies or straight faced movies. They actually made these comments after the huge success of the film both here in the UK and the US! I'm telling you people, don't listen to these idiots, just get with the Fuzz!
This is an intelligent British spoof cop film. It is rather different from American spoof movies, the list of which is almost endless and which rely on rather cheap gags, all the way back to Airplane and Naked Gun. This film has a proper plot line which is at the same time quite clever and in the end too ridiculous for words. Having a proper plot line means that (unlike American films) it can't be "laugh-a-minute" all the way through but instead has to lay the seeds of its jokes subtly during the first half before starting to bring them out in spectacular bloom during the second half. This means that the first half is funny (there is a good scattering of cheap gags all the way through), but feels a little slow, whereas the second half (definitely the last half hour) will leave you in stitches - but of course only if you have paid careful attention to the "set ups" in the first half.
This film pushes the boundaries of spoof movies and brings them home to Britain in a way that Hollywood could never do and certainly with jokes that many people outside Britain just would not get. Watch out in particular for the hint of "forbidden love" between the two cops and a subtle joke on Timothy Dalton's chin right at the end...
on 20 February 2007
I went to see this movie and I laughed so much I almost fell out of my wheelchair.
One of the best films to come out the UK in a dog's age. It is hysterically funny, deliciously gruesome in parts, you flinch at the scene when the reporter gets part of a church steeple dropped on his head and as for the scene in the model village, well you have to see it to believe it.
The plot is simple and to the point, hot shot London police officer Nicholas Angel played by Simon Pegg gets sent to a sleepy little village in middle England because he is too good at his job and is making his colleagues look bad.
However this little village isn't quite what it seems, there are a lot of unexplained deaths that are being passed off as accidents, and Nicolas finds out that the police chief isn't all that keen to rock the boat for his own reasons.
With a lumbering side kick who just happens to be the police chief's son, Nicholas tries to find out what is going on but is thwarted at every turn, and we watch in hysterical amusement as he arrests naughty boys for underage drinking, tries to capture a run-a-way swan, and collects an armoury of weapons from a farmers barnyard, whilst trying to work out why so many people in the village are having such "terrible accidents."
Not popular with the rest of the police officers/staff who would rather eat cake and drink tea, he tries to instil in them some pride in their job, he finally gets them to believe that not all is what it seems in their sleepy little village and one of the best scenes in the film is when they have to attack the Somerfield supermarket and are met by enraged villagers lobbing supermarket trolleys, vegetables and other food stuffs at them, you've not seen anything like it before but it is worth seeing the film just for those ten minutes alone.
Taking the Mickey out of every American buddy-buddy cop movie ever made, from Bad Boys, to Point Break, to 24 Hours, we are treated to an outrageous tongue in cheek comedy that leaves you wiping your eyes from laugher and hysteria.
With a star studded cast that include Timothy Dalton, Jim Broadbent, Edward Woodward, and Steve Coogan to name but a few, we get quality acting in a comedy that should be nominated for an Oscar just based on laughs alone.
As squeamish in parts as Shaun of the Dead but well worth going to the cinema to see and I will be buying the DVD as soon as it comes out because I will have to watch it all over again, because I am sure I have missed a lot of the jokes and humour when I was laughing so much in the cinema.
Simon Pegg and Nick Frost have done very well for themselves with a series of films taking a modern, humorous look at the films that they (and I) grew up with. Shaun of the Dead was a great pastiche of the schlock horror genre, and Hot Fuzz was a perfect take on action films.
Utilising every cliché in the book, we are treated to the tale of one man's mission to bring law and order to a sleepy rural village. Taking off everything from the Bill to Die Hard, and passing through every station in between, it's a rollercoaster of a ride packed with thrills and mystery. And jokes. Lots of jokes. It's hilarious.
Added into the mix is a fine roster of British actors. Jim Broadbent is absolutely superb as the commander of the local police force. Sterling work comes from Timothy Dalton in a great riff on his Bond characterisation (crossed with an Agatha Christie villain!) and the late Edward Woodward, who plays an elderly version of the Equaliser with his usual charm. Paddy Considine, Bill Bailey, Steve Coogan, Bill Nighy, Paul Freeman and, basically, anyone who is anyone in British TV and film get a llok in. Central to all of this is the pairing of Pegg and Frost, who's easy going friendship holds the whole film together and stops it being too much of a rambling mess.
I absolutely loved this film. It's a funny, affectionate look at films I love, played out with great charm by a cast who are obviously enjoying themselves enormously. 5 stars.
Hot Fuzz to the unknown is film that unleashes the devils. A British take off of the American shoot'em up cop films. The British version, however is much funnier with more belly laughs. I was not sure that what I had walked into and wondered if this was serious until the irony hit me.
Almost any British star you may think of appears in this film, and it is indeed fun to pick them out. I knew of Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, and this film brought their hilarity to the fore. Pegg plays Sargeant Angel from London who is such an exceptional cop that he puts everyone else to shame. He has a 400% arrest record, and the powers that be noticed he must be released. Off he is sent to the small town of Sandford.
What a grave disappointment to Angel. He finds the police force is shoddy and slow and their work ethic is below par. If takes awhile but he comes to realize that this town may have something.
The Neighbirhood Watch Association rubs the town, decides what is a crime, who should be dealt with, who will be released, and decides weapon to use. Angel slowly understands the climate, and he waits and listens, and plans. This is a very funny film, once you catch on. And the title of the film,should give you a leg up.
This is a great film for a lazy afternoon.
Recommended. prisrob 05-10-15