Theatrical Review: Hot Fuzz

Nicholas Angel is the top of the line on the London police force (excuse me, it should now be referred to as service- force implies to much of a physical threat), he’s so good at his job that he’s making the rest of the service look bad and as such he gets a promotion to sergeant but with that promotion comes a transfer to the sleepy, rustic little village of Sandford, where hardly a crime happens…

… that is until Nick Angel shows up and mysterious deaths start to occur.

Hot Fuzz is the latest film from the team of Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg, who brought us the Zombie take-off, Shaun of the Dead. This time, their target is big-ass Hollywood cop/action movies, particularly those as produced by Jerry Bruckheimer and Joel Silver and they deliver the goods pretty nicely here, not only giving you a spoof of said films, but also giving you a story that stands well on it’s own terms too (which is just what Shaun did too). It’s longer than what it should be, but really that’s just keeping in tone with the movies it’s taking off on, always seeming to go a little longer than they should.

Simon Pegg plays Nick Angel, and Pegg is really good here and he should be, he’s in damn near every scene of the film- you’ve got to believe in him or else this could really fall on his face, and you do believe in Nick Angel. He’s really earnest in the part, and at times reminds me of a younger Edward Woodward (who’s also in the film) particularly when Woodward made The Wicker Man. Pegg is backed up by his partner from Shaun, Nick Frost as one of Sandford’s police officers who wants to live the life of a Bruckheimer action movie hero. The ret of the cat are solid British actors, the type you expect to see in a movie about a small village like this, with Timothy Dalton leading the way with his devilish smile as the owner of a grocery store in the town who has more going on than just selling groceries. There’s also a nice bit at the beginning with top British talent like Martin Freeman, Steve Coogan and Bill Nighy that’s really fun to watch.

Now I wasn’t laughing uproariously during this (the kind of movies that do that for me are things like Borat, Jackass Number Two and Clerks IInot anything by Will Ferrell though, never funny, never will be), but I still had a real good time watching it. Some of the film is really quite funny, particularly near the end when it full-out turns into a Bruckheimer film and the rest for me was more quiet humor, but your mileage may vary. Just the same, Hot Fuzz gets a big recommendation here, go see it if you get the chance.

About Darren Goodhart

Darren Goodhart is a 44-year old St. Louis-based Graphic Designer and Illustrator (and former comic book artist) who's been seeing movies all his life, but on an almost weekly basis in theatres for the last 20 years and owns nearly 1,000 DVDs for his home theatre. He's learned a lot about film over the 20 year period, and has taken his appreciation beyond the mainstream. His favorite types of film are mostly genre entertainment, but he also enjoys a wide range of drama, action and cult-y stuff from around the world, and is currently re-discovering a love affair with lower budget exploitation and genre films from the 70s and early 80s. He doesn't try to just dismiss any film, but if there's a bias against one, he'll certainly tell you that in the space of his reviews.

23. April 2007 by Darren Goodhart
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