Rated R; Directed by Edgar Wright; Starring Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Timothy Dalton, Jim Broadbent
The action film Point Break did nothing for me; neither did Bad Boys or its sequel, Bad Boys II. So another movie that takes them as their role models should leave me cold too, right? Oh, but not when those films are so lovingly mined for comic effect. Hot Fuzz is funny, clever, and brings a whole new outlook on English-village living.
Sgt. Nicholas Angel (Simon Pegg), an exceptional police officer — he’s so good that the rest of the force is feeling left out — is transferred to a Sanford, a small village far from London where not much seems to happen. In no time at all Angel is rounding up petty lawbreakers, but his boss, Inspector Butterman (Jim Broadbent), has a more laid-back view. It’s police constable Danny Butterman (Nick Frost), the Inspector’s son, who finds Angel’s style of doing things exciting and glamorous. When several deadly “accidents” occur it is Angel and Butterman who think there’s something more sinister going on.
Writers Pegg and Edgar Wright, who also directs, know what they’re doing. Just as they managed to merger humor and gore in zombie movies with Shaun of the Dead, they keep the humor light while bringing us a slam-bang action film. It’s very British, but the combination of a “Bad Boys” style film set in a small town just works. My only complaint is that it starts to drag midway, but as soon as that thought crossed my mind the movie kicked into overdrive.
If you want the real Point Break or Bad Boys II then you may not enjoy the movie as much as someone who has rolled their eyes at all the clichés in action films, and wants something a little more clever. For those eye-rollers, Hot Fuzz is the film for you.