Hot Fuzz (2007)
Starring: Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Jim Broadbent, Paddy Considine, Timothy Dalton
Directed by: Edgar Wright
From the team that brought you the-better-than-it-had-a-right-to-be Shaun of the Dead comes Hot Fuzz. With their earlier film, writer-star Simon Pegg, director-writer Edgar Wright, and co-star Nick Frost took on the zombie movie with a sharp and hilarious offering. This time, they take on the action genre, and do so almost as brilliantly.
The action genre is one that is loaded with ridiculousness, but has been parodied to death. The last thing the world needed was another Lethal Weapon or Naked Gun movie. Luckily, Wright and Pegg are much smarter than the average satirist, and, much as they did with Shaun of the Dead, they know the best way to get their laughs is to play the action straight, and allow the unintentional humour that usually fills action flicks to take over intentionally.
The result is an uproarious comedy that provides more genuine thrills and excitement than most of the action movies it sends up. Just as Shaun was both funny and scary, and managed serious pathos in between the laughs and chills, Hot Fuzz is both funny and exciting, and even manages some sentiment (albeit not as much as Shaun). Honestly, you could wait all summer for scenes as action-packed as the climax of this film, and we’ll be lucky if anything as funny comes along.
As great as Hot Fuzz is, it’s not quite perfect. It’s not as clever as was Shaun of the Dead and lulls a bit in the middle when the movie gets bogged down with exposition. But it more than delivers on both the comedy and action fronts in the end, sending you out of theatre pleased and impressed. Pegg and Wright really know how to craft a movie, bringing all the elements together in the end to maximise their story and reward those who pay attention. I will now follow them wherever they want to go.