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Overall Rating

Worth A Look: 26.44%
Average: 10.34%
Pretty Bad: 2.3%
Total Crap: 0%

8 reviews, 39 user ratings

Hot Fuzz
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by EricDSnider

"The best comedy so far this year. Which isn't say much, I know, but still."
5 stars

The clever Brits who merrily deconstructed zombie movie with "Shaun of the Dead" have now applied their considerable talents to "Hot Fuzz," a loving and faithful comic homage to the Buddy-Cop Action Flick. Can I put in a request now for these guys to do this for every major film genre?

Parodies are a dime a dozen. Lame spoofs like "Epic Movie" and "Date Movie" pop up now and then, grab a couple cheap laughs, then evaporate as soon as their jokes become dated (usually in a matter of days). "Shaun of the Dead" and "Hot Fuzz" feature some satiric elements, but their central purpose is to express affection for the movies that inspired them, not derision. What's more, these homages are funny, exciting, and shrewd. Just as "Shaun" was both a gentle spoof of zombie movies and a very good zombie movie, "Hot Fuzz" is equally adept at repurposing the elements of a "Lethal Weapon"-type flick while also being one in its own right.

Edgar Wright is the director again, and once more he has co-written the screenplay with Simon Pegg. Pegg stars as Sgt. Nicholas Angel, a no-nonsense London cop, a married-to-his-job type whose arrest rate is four times higher than anyone else's in his precinct. For that reason -- i.e., he's making everyone else look bad -- he's sent to Sandford, a sleepy little country village where the greatest plague facing the citizenry is a street performer who poses as a statue for tip money. There is no crime. The local cops have little to do.

Nick resents the new assignment, but he vows to do his duty and make the most of it. He reminds me a lot of Dwight on "The Office." He has no visible sense of humor, he takes his job and its rules very seriously, and he won't abide any shenanigans. He's not even in Sandford 12 hours before he's chasing underage drinkers out of the pub and bringing a would-be drunk driver into the station to sleep it off in a cell.

That souse turns out to be his new partner, of course. His name is Danny Butterman, and he's played by Nick Frost, Pegg's buddy from "Shaun of the Dead." Danny isn't much of a cop, although, to be fair, Sandford doesn't need much of a cop. His dad (Jim Broadbent) is the commanding officer at the precinct, and Danny went into the family business on a lark. The other cops in Sandford include a pair of grouchy detectives (Paddy Considine and Rafe Spall), a lady cop (Olivia Colman) who speaks only in double-entendres, and a couple other hangers-on. Discipline and paperwork are handled rather loosely, as you might imagine.

Danny may be a slacker, but he's keen to learn. He's in awe of the fact that his new partner got to see a lot of action in London, and he rather adorably mimics everything Nick teaches him about Real Police Work. Nick, for his part, starts to loosen up a bit, particularly when Danny exposes him to something he's been missing out on all this time: super-awesome cop movies! "Point Break" and "Bad Boys II" are Danny's particular favorites, and you can see Nick's life change forever when he watches them for the first time.

But there's serious business to attend to! There's been a rash of strange fatal accidents in Sandford lately, and Nick suspects they are not accidental at all. We, the audience, know he is right, for we have seen a black-cloaked figure at the scene of every incident. Who is the culprit? The town is full of possible suspects, but the shadiest is Simon Skinner (Timothy Dalton!), manager of the local supermarket and a sly, villainous man if ever there was one.

Wright has lots of fun with the conventions of this genre, skewing them enough to be funny without turning into an all-out parody. He uses quick-cut editing and overdone sound effects to accompany Nick doing something mundane like filling out paperwork, and it gets a laugh every time. Just as in "Shaun of the Dead," the screenplay is rife with throwaway references to other films, as well as set-ups for punchlines that come later. Nearly every line of dialogue is relevant, either as foreshadowing for something else or as a standalone joke. You can quibble about the value of certain scenes, but to my mind there's not a wasted minute anywhere in the movie.

Nor is there a wasted actor. Pegg and Frost continue to be an outstanding comedy team, with perfect chemistry and delivery between them. But the supporting players are wonderfully dotty, too, including those who speak only one or two lines. Sandford is alive with odd little characters, from the hulking grocery store employee who mostly just says "yarp" (for "yes") to the decrepit old woman who runs the boarding house where Nick is staying.

It's hard to pin down the film's humor as one particular type; wordplay, slapstick, and witty repartee are all used to equally great effect. The jokes can be broad one minute, subtle the next. The main thing is, they're funny. From beginning to end, top to bottom, the movie is wonderfully funny.

And the resolution to the big mystery? Well, it's ludicrous, but intentionally so ... unlike "Bad Boys II," which I'm pretty sure wanted us to take it seriously.

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originally posted: 04/20/07 10:18:08
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User Comments

1/27/19 Jarod Oh my gods hot fuzz was in incredible funny but awesome 5 stars
5/01/18 Bents Had fun w/this movie. Was not what I was expecting 4 stars
9/14/17 morris campbell good not great 4 stars
8/31/13 Bert crude, violent, I quit midway 2 stars
5/28/12 Stefani K Fantastic. 5 stars
2/11/12 Bill White I agree with Rob. I gave it a two and a half on Rotten Tomatoes. The ending is pathetic. 2 stars
8/25/10 the dork knight Pegg is this movie. A couple nice buddy moments between him and Frost, too. 5 stars
10/25/09 Trent Coming from a US citizen, amazing movie, right up there with Shaun of the Dead 5 stars
10/01/08 Shaun Wallner I really enjoyed this film. 5 stars
4/14/08 Will Tingle Peggs best yet - can't imagine it works outside UK though... 5 stars
3/25/08 Isaac M. Baranoff Enjoyed it. Good film. 4 stars
3/21/08 Jeff As always Pegg was excellent 5 stars
3/17/08 Zachary Excellent movie, non-stop laughter. 5 stars
1/31/08 Beck Finaly a police satire that isn't afraid to have the hero actually kick some ass. 5 stars
12/04/07 ES 1 big laugh and a craptacular ending that kills all the goodwill generated by the beginning 3 stars
11/22/07 mr.mike not bad despite the somewhat dopey ending. Dalton is terrific 4 stars
9/28/07 R.W. Welch Outlandish cop satire. Just when you think it can't get any flakier, it does. 4 stars
9/24/07 Jason Brilliant, the turn from a horror movie to a comedy to an action film was seemless. 5 stars
9/15/07 AnnieG I didn't laugh as much as I expected, but I liked this film nonetheless. 4 stars
9/02/07 Quigley One of the funniest movies I've seen in a long time. Pegg and Frost rule so much. Rock on ! 5 stars
8/06/07 Monday Morning Gonsalves is right on - some good laughs but overall, just slightly better than AVERAGE. 3 stars
8/02/07 D Just rented it yesterday, and it is hilarious 5 stars
8/01/07 Dark Enchantress funny movie and had great action 5 stars
7/12/07 Louise Extremely entertaining and funny! Great British humour! 4 stars
6/11/07 al smith porceline is a fucking cock at least britain has some fresh ideas unlike shitty usa 5 stars
6/03/07 Steven Boring at the begging, best 45 min ending ever 4 stars
5/28/07 Rebecca Friggin hilarious! 5 stars
5/27/07 jcjs great, awesome..this site is way too slow now, not worth coming here imbd is the way to go 5 stars
5/16/07 Elizabeth Entertaining -- and any film which appreciates "Point Break" is fine with me! 4 stars
5/15/07 Richard Seen it twice, waiting for the DVD to come out in US! 5 stars
5/08/07 Dave well funny, me n my mate laughed loads 5 stars
5/07/07 Chris Lada OMG, funny!!!! 5 stars
5/05/07 hedd well made and pretty funny, but Gonsalves I agree 3 stars
5/04/07 Stacy Just great! 5 stars
5/03/07 Wesley Haven't laughed at a film this hard in a while. Truly remarkable. 5 stars
5/02/07 Ole Man Bourbon Really well-made film, funny. 4 stars
4/24/07 Luke Not as good as Shaun but bloody great nontheless 4 stars
4/23/07 joker allready own on dvd as out in uk 5 stars
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  20-Apr-2007 (R)
  DVD: 31-Jul-2007

  DVD: 11-Jun-2007


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