After huge success with 2004 “zom-com” Shaun Of The Dead, comedy duo Nick Frost and Simon Pegg pair up again to create Hot Fuzz. Simon Pegg also pairing to co-write with Egdar Wright once again, Hot Fuzz is another hugely hilarious brilliant film, with constant entertainment. It makes many references to their previous film, with Nick Frost still addicted to cornetos. It makes further references to other famous films also providing many laughs with their “Brit wit” sense of humour.
Simon Pegg plays London cop Nicholas Angel, but he isn’t any ordinary officer, he lives for his job and his job is his life. Sick and tired of his constant arrests and being too good for his job, fellow colleagues such as (Bill Baily) and his sergeant (Martin Freeman) transfers him to a small English village town of Sanford. With no choice in the matter he travels to the supposedly quiet little town of Sanford however it isn’t as quiet as suspected as a series of unordinary “accidents” occur. Officer Angel is paired with local moron and lazeabout PC Danny Butterman who just happens to be the inspectors son (Jim Broadbent) Danny’s usual day consists of buying cornetos and then the pub however this is all about to change now he has Nicholas Angel as his partner.
The comedy duo Nick Frost and Simon Pegg have huge success again keeping you constantly laughing with gags and goose changing. The film itself leaves the duo to provide laughter with the storyline providing the action. However Hot Fuzz isn’t just a normal action film with explosions and guns it takes a twist involving the elderly and reversing stereotypes. Although tense it made me laugh as well as being glued to the screen. It surprised me with how they presented deaths, although set in a small village it wasn’t pitchforks and shotguns but gruesome deaths that also play homage to other well-known films. The film fuels on the duo of Nicholas Angel and Danny Butterman investigating the link to all these “accidents”. Once realising the truth, that I will not reveal they are then spilt between two decisions and have to work out what’s for the greater good.
The acting in Hot Fuzz for me is outstanding, Nick Frost and Simon Pegg are brilliant once again. Simon Pegg and Egdar Wright deserve a lot of credit for their storyline, it’s unique, funny and action packed. The laughs in this film are great and big, and so is the action. The supporting cast is also great alongside the cameos of well-known actors including Steve Merchant, Steve Coogab and Bill Nighly previously used in Shaun Of The Dead. Hot Fuzz certainly ticks a lot of the right boxes, if you loved Shaun Of The Dead you will love this as it lives up to its standard. One that will make you laugh and another must watch.
Shaun Of The Dead is a British comedy about two best friends encountering a zombie invasion in London. Where most zombie films focus on the undead, this film takes a different approach and is more like a sitcom focusing on ordinary life problems but with flesh eating zombies getting in the way. Best-buds, housemates, drinking partners and lazy morons Shaun and Ed (Simon Pegg, Nick Frost) aim to fight away the shuffling zombies roaming London rescue loved ones and go to the local pub, The Winchester for a nice pint.
The film opens with a list of mocking ironic hints at a zombie invasion, almost teasing you. While the real world has its problems so does the world of Shaun, spending all his time in the local pub with Ed and working in a poxy small retail store his girlfriend Liz (Kate Ashfield) leaves him. However Shaun will fight for her and try and get her back but first a trip to The Winchester with Ed and a few beers. Waking up after choking on his own dribble Shaun and Ed realise that Zombies are walking the streets of London. Ignoring advice and love for classic records they fight back in hope of saving Shaun’s mum Barbara (Penelope Wilton) and getting back Liz.
In true comedy style they bash and bump their way through the undead with a cricket bat and shovel all fuelled from a can of coke and a Corneto. Shaun of The Dead plays to the humorous British stereotypes with the characters of Shaun’s mum Barbara and her husband Phil (Bill Nigly). In the face of death and hell the two stand firm in true British style by running bite wounds under a cold tap, putting on the kettle and making sandwiches. The play on the stereotypes brings laughs so credit to writers Edgar and Simon.
Shaun of The Dead is a very different take on the somewhat exhausted genre of zombie films. It creates many laughs and that’s down to the comedy duo Simon Pegg and Nick Frost who act very well as clueless morons. All in all this film gives you exactly what you expected, lots of laughs and comical idiotic ways of killing zombies. The best “zom-com” out there and possibly the only one with a soundtrack that includes Queen, a must watch film so don’t miss out.
Staring: Cillian Murphy, Naomie Harris, Christopher Eccleston
The British horror industry definitely got boosted when Danny Boyle released his post apocalyptic film in 2002. The film although low budget was a big hit in both the UK and US and even produced an American sequel 28 Weeks Later. The film starts in a lab, where animal testing on chimpanzees is taking place, when animal rights members break in to set them free it soon appears that the chimpanzees have been injected with something and are now all infected. We are given knowledge that the scientists have injected them with an “inhibitor” that causes rage, making the at first innocent and harmless chimps into blood thirsty killing machines. Ignoring warnings they free them only to be attacked and infected themselves, spreading to humans it then becomes a national pandemic wiping out the population and turning them into rage infested “zombies”.
Now knowing how the problem was caused the film focuses on the 28 days after and follows the life of Jim (Cillian Murphy) who has just woken up in hospital after a collision with a car when he was delivering a parcel on his bike. Unknown to him that his former life is now history and he’s about to walk out into a living hell he adventures across an abandoned London in search of life. However all he can find is dead, but the living dead? As he gets chased by a hoard he gets rescued by two over survivors Selena and Mark (Naomie Harris, Noah Huntley ). Held up in a corner shop they’re protected and have good and shelter and explain to a confused Jim what has happened.
Without ruining the film and giving away spoilers things go wrong when Jim searches for his family in what used to be his home. They then discover more survivors in a block of flats in a more rural London, Frank (Brendan Gleesan), a friendly cockney cab driver with a passion for wine and his daughter Hannah (Megan Burns), a 12 year old who knows how to change a tyre and hand-break turn. They set off for a “safe camp” a last resort in Manchester where they believe its safe and the military have a cure. After playing homage to Dawn of The Dead 1978 in a local Budgens they arrive in Manchester but is the answer to infection there? The rest of the film is set in an heritage countryside mansion but the zombies aren’t Jim’s only problem when he finds out the military have alternative motives.
28 Days Later is very different to other films of its genre, it takes a different approach on the “zombie” with the idea of rage, which at the time was a very common and talked about theory. I rate this film highly when looking on the technical side, for such a low budget film that used such underdeveloped equipment 28 Days Later has some remarkable shots. Danny Boyle captures the eye with an extraordinary opening sequence of a completed isolated London, something so rare and almost impossible to achieve again. He also makes it clear this is a British film unlike most others that play to the American audience and stereotype. The score and original soundtrack is also worth a mention, repetitively played throughout the film it creates a tense atmosphere but at the same time its refreshing and encouraging. Although a “horror”, 28 Days doesn’t have too many moments where you jump or gasp, it plays more on conflict between survivors and relationships. Despite this the film does have some gore and the bloody violence you would expect in the closing sequence.
Although its no classic compared to the Dawn Of The Dead’s it should be credited and for me it is one of the best British horror films in the last decade. Danny Boyle producing another must watch film as always.
Reviewing films and TV (sometimes other things) while doing a degree in Film and Literature. Find me elsewhere on tumblr: http://skruffreviews.tumblr.com Blogspot: http://skruffreviews.blogspot.co.uk Twitter: @SkruffReviews