Hot Fuzz (2007) (UK)
Posted: Thu May 17, 2007 2:54 pm
Director: Edgar Wright
Cast: Simon Pegg, Martin Freeman
The official website
Nicholas Angel (Simon Pegg), a policeman, is so excellent in his craft that his colleagues pale in comparison. As a result, they are too eager to rid of him, from London to the peaceful countryside of Sandford. Over there, he befriends Danny Butterman (Nick Frost) who wishes to be as outstanding as him. Simply a misfit, Nicholas may seem too uptight about rights and wrongs in the peaceful place. However, a series of murders soon occur, why does it occur and who does it?
* one should really avoid reading reviews that give the story away *
-- IMHO, 3 aspects of the film thrills ...
(i) some food for thoughts, some philosphical takes ...
... facade vs reality, facts vs figures, statistics and lies, etc
... priorities in life, e.g., family vs job, taking things seriously vs lightly, etc
... crimes, e.g., prevention vs protection, punishment vs forgiveness, legal vs social, etc
... politics e.g., in jobs and in society, etc
(ii) its sense of humor ... wow ... kind of dark or even twisted at times ... maybe one could try surfing the net for a compilation ... in addition, there are many PUNS too, that is, if you are quick enough to catch it ... honestly, i am not even sure if i have really caught all of them ... i guess i have to watch it again to gather more ... ha ha ha
(iii) i also like the way the film is edited ... not only does it seem "stylish", it literally accelerates the pace of the film and keeps one on his toes ... interestingly, some edits are done out of humor to coincide with the next frame ... watch it and you will get it ...
What could be better?
hmmm, since i have typed it in the next para, please see it in the conclusion ...
Highly recommended, except for one thing ... i think it triumphs on three grounds (i) the witty humor (ii) the intense thriller coupled with the interesting/fast paced edit and (iii) the initial philosphical take ... however, i have some minor qualms over the way it ends (i.e., the last 20 minutes or so) ... however, i do recognize that some others may be perfectly okay with it ... without giving too much away, i would say the film should have ended just before the "come back" and "crazy gunfire" (which render the film too commercial and less realistic for me, but it possibly pleases all the teens) ... up to that point, i thought the film is still very credible and hence, it should adopt a grim ending to get audience discussing about the several philosophical takes it throws out ... nonetheless, this ending does not alter my decision to highly recommend it ...
Re: Hot Fuzz (2007) (UK)
Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2007 7:52 am
Just like in the other genre-worship offering in Death Proof, theres 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. Its 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.
Edgar 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.
A shrewd difference between the two films is that Hot Fuzz exists in an universe resembling the audiences, 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 films 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.
Among Wrights 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.
For what its 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 theres an immediate and sobering understanding that though the film might have exhausted its repertoire, at the very least youd have stumbled on the definition of paro-dying.