Thursday, May 03, 2007

Hot Fuzz


It's been almost a week, and I'm still laughing about Hot Fuzz, the spiritual successor from the guys behind Shaun of the Dead.

I had low expectations for a funny, but throw-away film, based on the U.S. trailers for the film, which make look almost like a live-action Team America: World Police.

Not to take anything away from that film, but Hot Fuzz is way different, and (for me) way better.

The trailers I've seen are selling the film at a disservice, because this is one hip, hilarious, smart, and tightly acted / written / edited film.

Simon Pegg (Sergeant Nicholas Angel) is top-notch, and is a prolific writer / actor the likes of to which to aspire. He plays a believable hard-nosed / -assed cop officer, and rarely can be seen wearing "look how funny my writing is" on his sleeve (there is a moment, though; the first "By the power of ..." is gold, and the second is contrived).

Nick Frost (PC Danny Butterman), Pegg's rotund subtly faux bumbling partner in the sleepy hamlet to which Angel's been reassigned, is so amazingly committed to his character and actions, he's a real joy to watch.

And Timothy Dalton gives me probably my favorite performance of his since The Rocketeer. The way this guy can act and have fun with himself is impressive.

Perhaps the strength of the film is its ability to pull off the ludicrous, making me laugh because it's ludicrous, but it doesn't feel unreal. That and being able to pull off the humor and the grotesque side-by-side.

Not to give anything away, but the plot twists in the film feel organic to the genre; the "genre" being an Edgar Wright & Simon Pegg film. Almost reverse Scooby-Doo, in a way. Whatever. Brass tacks: I didn't feel jerked around.

I heartily recommend the film. It's a tight, hilarious, surprisingly high-caliber offering for an early summer kick off for action and comedy fans.