Director: Edgar Wright
Starring: Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Jim Broadbent,
Paddy Considine, Steve Coogan, Timothy Dalton, Martin Freeman,
Paul Freeman, Bill Nighy, Lucy Punch, Anne Reid, Billie Whitelaw,
Stuart Wilson, Edward Woodward
RunTime: 2 hrs 1 min
Released By: UIP
Rating: NC-16 (Violence)
Official Website: http://www.hotfuzz.com
Date: 21 June 2007
colleagues conspire to get a top London cop (Pegg) transferred
to a small town and paired with a witless new partner (Frost).
On the beat, the pair stumble upon a series of suspicious
accidents and events.
like in the other genre-worship offering in “Death Proof”,
there’s a reference versus reverence debate being waged
in “Hot Fuzz”. The vantage point for the latter
is that it is not being deliberately coy or clandestine about
its intentions or its limitations for that matter. It’s
because of this aspect that “Hot Fuzz” never elevates
higher than a self-referential parody, and never truly deconstructs
the genre it lampoons (though it comes damn close to it at
extended intervals), which in this case is of the action/crime
variety. Not as pointed and neatly demarcated as “Shaun
of the Dead” with its directed focus on the walking
dead but expansive enough for a lengthy two-hour action comedy
that relents more one-liners and subtle cultural jabs than
one should be able to process in a single seating.
Wright and Simon Pegg might just be the sharpest minds in
Britain but it remains to be seen if parodies are the only
comic assaults they have in their feature film arsenal. Comparatively,
“Hot Fuzz” lacks a discipline and resonance felt
in “Shaun of the Dead”, a stylistic and thematic
peer by all accounts. However, their latest spoof has a sophisticated
sense of perspicuity that only comes from experience.
difference between the two films is that “Hot Fuzz”
exists in an universe resembling the audience’s, the
one staring back at the screen while “Shaun of the Dead”
and indeed, a great deal of its ilk are based in a movie-universe
of its own that lacks any sort of self-awareness in its logic.
This cinematic consciousness is plainly seen in its diegetic
verbal cues of indicating the films that it ends up cribbing
from, and brazenly imitating the best and worst of them. A
visual cue that is played up for gags is the film’s
poster that strongly recalls the self-parody of “Bad
Boys II” and is later worked into the narrative as a
motivator for one of its characters.
Wright’s tried and trusted template are quicksilver
edits, narrative bends that cause whiplash and acid satire
expertly delivered with a straight face. As succinct a description
as possible would be saying that Wright and Pegg approaches
their humour with a measure of calculated meta-absurdity,
something that permeates the droll, derisiveness of its mostly
fish-out-of-water humour and quaint melding of British and
American pop culture fetishism.
what it’s worth, running out of ammo (far from being
literal) at the end of a film that starts out so spectacularly
funny is not as shameful as it would be in a lesser effort.
Its breathless pacing grinds to a halt so suddenly that there’s
an immediate and sobering understanding that though the film
might have exhausted its repertoire, at the very least you’d
have stumbled on the definition of paro-dying.
(Spectacularly funny for the first half, but is unable to
sustain itself throughout the 2 hours)
Review by Justin Deimen