Hot Fuzz (2007)
March 8, 2018 6:37 PM - Subscribe

A skilled London police officer is transferred to a small town that's harbouring a dark secret.

Slant: A tongue-in-cheek take on Hollywood action films from the makers of Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz operates off a series of contrasts: between American and British crime fiction, urban and rural cultures, severe violence and goofy one-liners, and also between its central protagonists, no-nonsense super-cop Nicholas Angel (Simon Pegg) and his bumbling, movie-obsessed partner Danny Butterman (Nick Frost). Such dissimilarities are far from original, but that’s part of the point, as director Edgar Wright’s latest deliberately revels in cliché overload as a means of lovingly parodying—as well as paying homage to—three decades-worth of trigger-happy films.

NYTimes: A wee bit of plot tucked amid a fusillade of film-geek jokes and charming nonsense, bang-bang, hee-hee, “Hot Fuzz” trots out the predictable verbal and visual allusions to modern Hollywood action movies great and forgettable, hitting the highs (“Point Break”) right along with the lows (“Bad Boys II”). The meta-movie silliness works well enough for the crisp setup. But since Mr. Wright and Mr. Pegg are essentially parodying self-parodies (see “Con Air” ad infinitum), they have also smartly kinked up their conceit by setting most of the film in a sleepy village that might as well be called Ye Old English Towne, thereby wedding one of the most irritating British exports (see “Calendar Girls” ad nauseam) to one of the most absurd American ones.

The Guardian: Danny and Nicholas, as their friendship deepens, share a woman-free relationship that is tragically homoerotic in the tradition of movies that Danny loves, such as Point Break and Bad Boys II (exquisitely, it is the distinctively crasser sequel that Danny specifies). He has a vast DVD library of these films, and passionately yearns for the muscular simplicity of American cops with their lock'n'load approach to taking down the bad guys. The irony is that he is the unwitting prisoner of quite another kind of crime genre: without knowing it, poor Danny is living inside an English Gothic celluloid nightmare like Straw Dogs or The Wicker Man. Edward Woodward, the baffled policeman in this latter film, plays the neighbourhood-watch enforcer here.

Where the American movies show a heavily tooled-up and male combination of might and right triumphing over evil, these British films satirically and pessimistically show evil eroding the valiant forces of good. There is no "community" in pictures such as Lethal Weapon or Die Hard, however malign - other than the community of cops in the station house. But the community is what encircles and embattles the police in the creepy English template. So Danny and Nicholas finally bring the wholesomely unreflective American armed response to the English village green to blast away its petty xenophobic conspiracies.


Streaming on Netflix

Hot Fuzz is a Goddamned Masterpiece

29 Things We Learned from the Hot Fuzz Commentary

'Hot Fuzz' is the best film in Edgar Wright's Cornetto Trilogy

The Point Break Scenes
posted by MoonOrb (34 comments total) 17 users marked this as a favorite
I don't remember a time when I didn't want to be a police officer...apart from the summer of 1979 when I wanted to be Kermit the Frog.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:01 PM on March 8, 2018 [7 favorites]

The cinematography in this was so good. I experienced movie-watching delight which I can count on one hand.
posted by zeek321 at 7:05 PM on March 8, 2018 [1 favorite]

And I thought that was weird, at the time.
posted by zeek321 at 7:05 PM on March 8, 2018

Let's not forget Rory McCann. "Yarp!"
posted by miss-lapin at 7:10 PM on March 8, 2018 [6 favorites]

The best of the Cornetto movies and maybe the film I've recommended to the most people.
posted by Pope Guilty at 7:26 PM on March 8, 2018 [7 favorites]

Ahhhhhhhhhh!!!!! *fires into the air*
posted by MoonOrb at 7:28 PM on March 8, 2018 [7 favorites]

Only Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg could make a film that is a parody of British Mystery shows and ALSO a parody of Point Break.
posted by selfnoise at 7:34 PM on March 8, 2018 [11 favorites]

I feel a cornetto marathon coming on.
posted by miss-lapin at 7:35 PM on March 8, 2018 [1 favorite]

I'm bummed that The World' End is not streaming on Netflix right now.
posted by MoonOrb at 7:39 PM on March 8, 2018 [1 favorite]

You should definitely take 26:40 of your time and check out the Movies With Mikey video on Hot Fuzz, not only does he make you appreciate and enjoy the movie more but towards the end when he places it in the context of today's conversations around policing, damn. Just new levels of amazingness.
posted by jason_steakums at 9:30 PM on March 8, 2018 [7 favorites]

Relevant Every Frame a Painting
posted by rhizome at 10:00 PM on March 8, 2018 [4 favorites]

The peace lily I had on my desk from 2008-2012 was named Danny Butterman.
posted by elsietheeel at 5:19 AM on March 9, 2018 [5 favorites]

What a fantastic movie. Its hilariousness makes it easy not to notice how super tightly constructed and crafted it is.

I will maintain to my dying day that "...Narp?" is the single greatest syllable in the history of cinema.
posted by dfan at 5:40 AM on March 9, 2018 [8 favorites]

I've watched Hot Fuzz at least a dozen times, but after reading this thread I'm going to have to go and watch it again...for the greater good.
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 5:58 AM on March 9, 2018 [8 favorites]

...the greater good.
posted by elsietheeel at 6:05 AM on March 9, 2018 [26 favorites]

Hello Nicholas. How’s the hand?
posted by valkane at 6:06 AM on March 9, 2018

From the Kotaku link:
"The action in Hot Fuzz goes for something similar, and while it must be said that Edgar Wright and his editor, Chris Dickens, aren’t as good at it as Bay and his team..."
I can't agree with this. Wright effortlessly parodies Bay, while also making his action scenes work properly. Bay's are a confused mess most of the time.

Also, Edward Woodward's in this? I didn't recognise him at all. Just that one little thing puts a new angle on the film for me.
posted by rhamphorhynchus at 7:21 AM on March 9, 2018 [4 favorites]

Agreed, rhamphorhynchus. Edgar Wright completely out-Bayhemed Bay himself with this movie.
posted by tobascodagama at 7:37 AM on March 9, 2018 [2 favorites]

This my favorite Pegg performance in the cornetto trilogy, and it's my favorite movie of the three. It's even more impressive because I hate the action-police movies it's parodying, but I love the results. I don't think I really got the movie until I read some trivia that the second-half showdown includes every cop-movie trope that Danny mentions in the movie.

Timothy Dalton and Jim Broadbent are so good in their roles!
posted by gladly at 10:14 AM on March 9, 2018 [4 favorites]

God, does Dalton love to chew the scenery in this movie, it's great!!
posted by Pendragon at 10:22 AM on March 9, 2018 [6 favorites]

That shot of Dalton making the same expression as a photograph of Dalton seen over his shoulder.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:45 AM on March 9, 2018 [8 favorites]

Cameos: Cate Blanchett is Angel's ex-girlfriend; Peter Jackson is the Stabby Claus. Pair of crusty jugglers, those two.

You should definitely take 26:40 of your time and check out the Movies With Mikey video on Hot Fuzz , not only does he make you appreciate and enjoy the movie more but towards the end when he places it in the context of today's conversations around policing, damn. Just new levels of amazingness.

Yes, this is one the of the best episodes of Movies with Mikey - he loves this film (well, I mean, he generally loves all the films he covers, but he really loves Hot Fuzz) and his concluding thoughts about how this film has become more relevant as it has aged is really great (Make Sanford Great Again).
posted by nubs at 12:25 PM on March 9, 2018 [1 favorite]

Very charming film, though I spent a lot of time called Simon Pegg "not-John Simm."
posted by praemunire at 1:27 PM on March 9, 2018

This is the perfect movie

That’s all.
posted by The Whelk at 6:23 PM on March 9, 2018 [6 favorites]

How lucky are Wright, Pegg and Frost to have a collaborative relationship that so perfectly elevates each of them when they work together? They form this like cinematic Captain Planet with their powers combined and make all the incredible effort they put in look so effortless in these movies.
posted by jason_steakums at 6:28 PM on March 9, 2018 [3 favorites]

Like it took me a forth viewing to notice the council members all hate hoodies and then are revealed to be wearing , in secrets ....hoods.

Or that the other police officers are always eating, cause they’re all functionally hobbits.

Given the lack of a romantic interest, thier personal chemistry, and the PoinBreak references, I have always classified this as an Action-Romance
posted by The Whelk at 6:39 PM on March 9, 2018 [5 favorites]

One of my top ten movies of all time. Brilliant writing. And a really excellent soundtrack and score, and so, so quotable. "Nobody tells me nothin.'"

I love my setup at home for watching movies, but it just can't replicate the movie theater experience of seeing a big room full of people be absorbed in a good film, get startled by jump scares, and get killed by a great joke. This movie was a terrific theater experience.

It's very funny, of course, and its combination of bombastic cop movie tropes with The Wicker Man is like a combination made for me personally to enjoy. But I guess the thing that I really adore about this film is that Nick takes things seriously; he's dedicated to being a professional because he feels like it's his duty, and he values principle. Yet he's surrounded by people who don't share his values at all, and not only do they take advantage of him, they break the rules and work against him for petty reasons. And this isolates him. And in real life, I feel like that so often. Not saying that's great, that's just the way it is. The scene in which it's Danny's birthday, and Nick is standing there in the police station laying out all the evidence of the murders, and people are doubting and judging and gaslighting him... It's very funny, yet I always feel so deeply for Nick in that scene.
posted by heatvision at 4:27 AM on March 10, 2018 [9 favorites]

Yet he's surrounded by people who don't share his values at all, and not only do they take advantage of him, they break the rules and work against him for petty reasons

Used to great and hilarious effect in the phone call about the missing swan:

Nicholas Angel: Right. And where has the swan escaped from exactly?
P.I Staker: Uh, the castle.
Nicholas Angel: Oh, yeah? And who might you be?
P.I Staker: Mr. Staker. Yeah, Mr. Peter Ian Staker.
Nicholas Angel: P.I. Staker?
P.I Staker: Yeah.
Nicholas Angel: Right. "Piss Taker." Come on!
Nicholas Angel: [cut to Nicholas with Mr. Staker] Yes, Mr. Staker. Um, we'll do everything we can. Can you describe it to me?

This is one of the things I love about the movie; this scene is funny, but it also shows the strain Angel is under; he breaks his usual veneer of utter professionalism when dealing with the public because everyone else at the station is undercutting him at every turn.
posted by nubs at 8:10 AM on March 10, 2018 [3 favorites]

This thread prompted me to rewatch. There are a couple of scenes which suggest possible visual references and i was wondering if anyone knew possible sources. Firstly, there is a scene at about the hour stage, after Messenger has been murdered, when Angel and Danny are on watch in waterproofs. Danny tells Angel that Angel doesn't know how to switch off then turns and waddles away. Is that movement away a reference to a well known scene from a prior movie or just playing for laughs? Its at 5.32 in rhizome's link.

The other is during the fight in the model village at the end. Skinner catches Angel's punch in one hand then punches him repeatedly while saying 'Get. Out. Of. My. Village'. Angel then catches the punch in his hand and hits back. Its from 0.57 here. It seemed like it might have been something obvious but I can't place it. I'm thinking something quite specific that this is parodying rather than just a general fight scene (clearly this is a very common trope).
posted by biffa at 4:33 PM on March 10, 2018

I'm pretty sure that second trope you mention (catching punches) features prominently in one of the Smith/Neo fights from the Matrix movies.
posted by tobascodagama at 4:40 PM on March 10, 2018 [1 favorite]

I did have a look at the subway fight from the first matrix film before posting! I guess I will go through the rest in the morning.
posted by biffa at 4:57 PM on March 10, 2018

I think it was the big one at the end of Revolutions. It took place in the rain, which Hot Fuzz replicates here with sprinklers.

Although most of the references in this movie are to other cop flicks, so the Matrix stuff might be a red herring.
posted by tobascodagama at 6:11 PM on March 10, 2018

Can't see it in the Matrix Revolution big fight. I think it might be something I have see recently but can't put my finger on it.

The other thing that I was disappointed to find out about HF was that the Aaron A. Aaronson joke was a reference to the Simpsons, I had assumed it was a reference to Aaron A. Aardvark, the first person in the Mega City One phone directory and this the first person to die when Judge Cal ordered the execution of all MC1 citizens in 'The Day the Law Died'. Not impossible given Pegg's well known 2000AD influences.
posted by biffa at 6:45 AM on March 11, 2018 [1 favorite]

We just completed this after a false start, due to my need to continually pause the film in the first thirty minutes to laugh uncontrollably at fifty percent or more of the roughly once or twice per second jokes. Holy crap, what a burnished script until the last action sequence!
posted by mwhybark at 1:02 AM on July 7, 2018

« Older Podcast: The McElroy Brothers ...   |  Jessica Jones: AKA Start at th... Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments