Starring: Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Timothy Dalton, Jim Broadbent, Paddy Considine, Rafe Spall, Karl Johnson, Olivia Colman
Directed By: Edgar Wright
Written By: Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg
Rating: R (US) Running Time: 2 hr 1 min
Super cop, Sergeant Nicholas Angel (Simon Pegg), transferred away from the London Metropolitan police for being too good at his job, finds himself in the sleepy village of Standford. Soon after his arrival, a series of mysterious deaths get the sergeant curious, and with little help available from his apathetic colleagues, save for his eager action movie fanatic partner, PC* Danny Butterman (Nick Frost), Officer Angel starts his own investigation, and uncovers a deadly plot!
Following Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz**, the second film in the ‘Cornetto trilogy’, is a great parody of the buddy cop genre. Death and mayhem with a quaint English country village as the bloody backdrop, and the results are hysterical. But after watching this movie twice, I still find I’m in two minds about the slow first and second acts. On the one hand the long buildup, and having Simon Pegg play the straight guy for so long, does make the film drag a bit. On the other hand, I’m not sure the last twenty minutes of this movie would be as entertaining, if we weren’t so ready for Pegg to finally cut loose and bring the noise.
That’s not to say the first ninety minutes of Hot Fuzz are completely worthless however. Nick Frost is great as Angel’s partner in crime-fighting, and I loved Timothy Dalton in this film as the homage to the classic English villain we often see in Hollywood films. Some of the supporting characters, like the two village detectives played by Paddy Considine and Rafe Spall were a miss for me, but I did enjoy every incomprehensible sound that came out of Karl Johnson’s mouth as PC Bob Walker. Especially on the few occasions you could actually understand him, and he translates PC Doris Thatcher’s (Olivia Colman) latest sexual innuendo.
* Police Constable
** Fuzz – synonym for, police.
The only connection between this film and Shaun of the Dead, other than the director, actors, writers, and probably most of the crew, is the ice-cream treat known as the Cornetto! Story wise, these are completely different, but if you enjoyed Shaun of the Dead, you’ll likely find this entertaining. The movie earns its R rating through some pretty graphic bits if violence.
The little village of Stanford looks very nice, but this film can be enjoyed on any device you care to watch it on. However, the action would have more impact on a larger screen.
The last twenty minutes of this film are amazing, starting with Simon Peg riding his horse into the village center, armed to the teeth!