Is it bad that I’ve never watched an Edgar Wright movie besides Baby Driver? Actually scratch that, I’ve watched a movie written by Edgar Wright, Ant-Man, but I’ve never knowingly watched a movie where I could look at it and say “Oh that’s so Edgar Wright! That’s definitely his style and sense of direction, yes sir! No doubt about it!” I knew that the Shaun of the Dead-esque movies were related but didn’t know Wright was the guy who tied them all together. But after watching the excellent Baby Driver, it was apparent that I need to dig into his filmography a bit deeper and see what I’m missing out on.
So I started with the first Wright film I could find on Netflix, which was Hot Fuzz, a perfectly respectable movie in its own right but doesn’t old the same cult status as say Shaun of the Dead or Scott Pilgrim vs. the World. Hot Fuzz, still perfectly humorous in its own right, isn’t on a legendary, laugh-out-loud status. Still, there’s something palpable, engaging and endearing about this movie, quick-witted and fast-moving, where every character is our friend and not even the enemies are enemies.
Simon Pegg plays a hard-working, career-focused London cop whose just a teensy bit too good at his job, so his superiors relocate him to the idyllic but boring town of Sandford. Everyone is super friendly and charming in Sandford, but there’s a strange bout of people whom are being murdered but their deaths are being disguised as “accidents.” Helping Pegg figure out the crimes is the foolhardy Nick Frost, a naïve but well-meaning cop who still is under the spell of his dad, a senior officer in the police force. Together the too deal with seemingly unaware village folk who don’t seem to mind that nearly everyone around them is ending up dead.
It’s a raucous ride, clever with its foreshadowing and respectable for its attention to detail and bits of humor that sprout throughout. Even if this was the weakest of the Edgar Wright Simon Pegg movies, it still is an unappreciated comedy in my eyes, which only makes me wonder just how much more Wright goodness I’ve been missing out on.