Tag Archives: Nick Frost

Hot Fuzz (2007) Review

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Hot Fuzz

Time: 121 Minutes
Age Rating: 2773-o[1] contains violence, horror scenes & offensive language
Cast:
Simon Pegg as Nicholas Angel
Nick Frost as Police Constable Danny Butterman
Jim Broadbent as Inspector Frank Butterman
Director: Edgar Wright

Police officer Nicholas Angel (Simon Pegg) is known to be the best across London. His seniors, who are jealous of his achievements, transfer him to a remote village where he encounters various challenges.

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I always remembered really liking Edgar Wright’s Hot Fuzz, it was funny, smart, and really fun to watch. After rewatching it after a long time though, it actually holds up far better than I thought it did.

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Hot Fuzz is written by Edgar Wright, the great script is an improvement over Wright’s previous movie Shaun of the Dead, definitely feeling much tighter, and had me entertained from beginning to end. Once again, like the rest of Wright’s Cornetto trilogy (also consisting of Shaun of the Dead and The World’s End), it really works much better on repeat viewings. You really notice things that you missed the first time around including little details, plot points and even jokes. It really shows how smartly written this movie is, that it is packed with so much. Hot Fuzz is very much a satire on action and buddy cop films, in the same way that Shaun of the Dead was a satire on zombie movies. Like with Shaun of the Dead though, Wright clearly has a love for those genres and is very knowledgeable about them. It would be one thing to just feature a cliché from the action genre and then point and laugh at it, it is actually put together very well and done with love for the genre. Along with that, Wright adds in elements of horror and suspense that spice the movie up a little more. The humour is endless hilarious, it was very effective and just about every joke hit well for me. There are so many quotable lines and running jokes that are so well written and implemented into the movie. The third act is a full on take on the over the top action in an action movie, and it was very fun to watch. As much as I liked that third act, I will say that the previous two acts worked a little better for me.

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The cast were all great in their parts. Simon Pegg and Nick Frost are once again in the lead roles here, and they share some perfect chemistry. It’s not just them though, supporting cast members like Jim Broadbent, Timothy Dalton and plenty more do add quite a bit with their performances and make themselves stand out.

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Edgar Wright directs Hot Fuzz, and he has done a fantastic job. Like with the script, the direction here feels a lot tighter compared to Shaun of the Dead. Something about all of Wright’s films is that you can really feel the energy throughout and that goes a long way towards making the movies work as well as they do. A big part of that has to be the editing, which has really escalated from Shaun of the Dead. It feels like a constant presence throughout, the transitions are sharp, it works perfectly for comedic effect, and is just fantastic overall. Even the mundane things like filling out paperwork are made very flashy. The visual gags too are so well handled, plenty of things you can miss if you’re not paying attention for a split second. As previously said, there’s a lot of action in the third act, with every over the top trope in an action film imaginable making an appearance. It’s also genuinely entertaining.

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Hot Fuzz is a hilarious and entertaining action comedy satire, with Edgar Wright’s strong and sharp writing and direction making this a must see. It is a strong contender for Edgar Wright’s best film to date, it’s either this or The World’s End, and this is definitely one of my favourite comedies of all time.

Shaun of the Dead (2004) Review

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Shaun of the Dead

Time: 99 Minutes
Age Rating: 2773-o[1]
Cast:
Simon Pegg as Shaun
Nick Frost as Ed
Kate Ashfield as Liz
Lucy Davis as Dianne
Dylan Moran as David
Penelope Wilton as Barbara
Bill Nighy as Philip
Director: Edgar Wright

Shaun (Simon Pegg) is a salesman whose life has no direction. However, his uneventful life takes a sudden turn when he has to singlehandedly deal with an entire community of zombies.

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The zombie genre isn’t one of my favourite sub-genres, even among the horror genre. However within that subgenre, Shaun of the Dead remains one of my favourite movies from it. I rewatched it recently and I think it’s quite good. It’s funny, it’s entertaining, and it’s very well written and directed by Edgar Wright.

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The script by Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg was really good and smart, blending horror and comedy effectively. They clearly have a lot of love for the genre, with a lot of the subversions and references that they have added. The comedy is pretty strong, with a lot of recurring jokes and certain details that you pick up on with repeat viewings. I wouldn’t say that movie is constantly hilarious or anything, maybe it’s just that it hasn’t held up that well for me the more I watched it. However, there are definitely moments that still work and remain to this day really great. The dialogue is great too, with some really memorable and quotable lines. One of the biggest surprises was the drama that was in place in the movie, especially in the third act. Shaun of the Dead is still mostly a comedy, but those dramatic and character moments actually work quite well. The movie really not scary at all, so if you’re not a big fan of horror you can still like the movie (as long as you can deal with the gore). Like I said with the jokes, you really notice more things upon further rewatches, and on my third viewing, I still noticed things that I hadn’t discovered before. The movie is an hour and 40 minutes long and overall I’d say that this was the right length for the movie.

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Simon Pegg is in one of his best roles as the titular character. Nick Frost plays Shaun’s best friend, he was also great. Pegg and Frost share some great on-screen chemistry together and they really feel like friends. The rest of the cast are good too.

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Edgar Wright directs Shaun of the Dead and his direction was one of the key aspects of making the movie work as well as it did. It is his first film and it really does feel like a debut film, but I don’t mean that in necessarily a bad way. You can really feel a lot of energy from this movie and that carries a lot of it. The editing and style are very fast paced so that helps too, though it hasn’t reached its fullest potential just yet (at least compared much as Wright’s later movies). There is a lot of attention to detail too, with visual gags that can be missed and reoccurring jokes. For a comedy horror movie, the makeup effects on the zombies and the gore are genuinely great. The movie really isn’t scary at all (unless you have a massive fear of zombies), it’s more gory than anything. The actual action is not all that great, not that I was expecting much of that from this movie. However let’s just say that you definitely notice a big difference in the quality of action from this movie compared to say The World’s End released 9 years later. The soundtrack was also great and was utilised in the movie well, perfect song choices for scenes is something that Wright does very well. It has quite possibly the best use of Queen in a movie.

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Shaun of the Dead is a fun zombie comedy, Edgar Wright’s script and direction carried it, and the cast also did well, especially Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. I will say that I didn’t like the movies as much as the other movies in the Cornetto trilogy (Hot Fuzz and The World’s End), but it’s still really good and worth watching for sure if you haven’t seen it already.

Unfinished Business (2015) Review

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Unfinished Business

Time: 91 Minutes
Age Rating: 860949[1] Offensive Language, Sexual References, Nudity and Drug Use
Cast:
Vince Vaughn as Daniel “Dan” Trunkman
Tom Wilkinson as Timothy McWinters
Dave Franco as Mike Pancake
Sienna Miller as Charlene “Chuck” Portnoy
Nick Frost as Bill Whilmsley
James Marsden as Jim Spinch
Director: Ken Scott

Tired of playing second-fiddle to his obnoxious boss (Sienna Miller), businessman Dan Trunkman (Vince Vaughn) quits and forms his own competing mineral sales firm. He takes a retiring associate (Tom Wilkinson) and a dim-witted sales applicant (Dave Franco) with him. After a year and a half of struggle, a promising deal is in sight — then promptly folds, thanks to Dan’s ex-boss. Determined to save the deal, Dan and company fly to Germany, where a series of outrageous obstacles awaits.

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The two biggest sins that a comedy can commit is to be unfunny and boring. Unfinished Business is one of those films which unfortunately does both of them and this movie really was even worse than it should’ve been. Despite a talented cast and a good writer this movie fails on pretty much every level. It’s not funny, it’s not smart, so many jokes feel forced and almost every joke is so easy. There really isn’t any reason to watch this movie.

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As you could probably tell by now that the jokes didn’t work and weren’t funny at all. There were times where the jokes were so forced and at times cringe worthy. For example James Franco’s character’s last name is Pancake, that’s the level of comedy that this movie is at. It doesn’t help that some of the scenes and scenarios were created just to make a joke which as you can imagine, misses. Another bad aspect is that the whole film felt boring. The entire movie surrounded Vince Vaughn making some deal and that’s pretty much the whole movie, with countless scenes added and stretched out to pad the runtime so that it was at least 90 minutes. Also Unfinished Business felt like an unfinished film, there are scenes that don’t fit in with each other. For example this movie starts off with Vince Vaughn having an argument with his boss before leaving and it felt like there was supposed to be a scene beforehand, so from the get go the scenes in the movie starting feeling out of place. It’s hard to see how this movie had a script this bad from Steve Conrad, the writer of The Pursuit of Happiness.

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Vince Vaughn is really just playing Vince Vaughn again. He’s fine in the role (even though he doesn’t produce any forms of laughs) and actually comes out the best out of the main cast, that’s not saying a lot though. It’s not just Vince Vaughn who isn’t funny though, because Tom Wilkinson doesn’t give a good performance either, which is a real shame seeing as he’s one of the best actors we have working in the business today. Dave Franco is a good actor and can be good and very funny in movies like 21 Jump Street and Bad Neighbours. With that said, Dave Franco’s character in this movie is honestly one of the dumbest characters I’ve seen in a movie. I know he’s supposed to be stupid but it really wasn’t done right and it was a chore to watch his character do dumb things, making it even harder to watch the movie. All of these people are talented but none of them come out looking good on any level.

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The worst thing about this movie is that it’s really a time waster. This movie fails as a comedy, but it’s not like with Raising Arizona where I could just claim that it’s not my style for comedy. I don’t know what group of people would find this movie funny. Not one joke hit in the entire movie, for me it is one of the worst ‘comedies’ I’ve seen (though I haven’t seen Disaster Movie, nor do I ever want to). It wasted a good cast and there’s really no reason to watch it. Unfinished Business was one of the worst films of 2015.

The World’s End (2013)

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The World's End

Time: 109 Minutes
Age Rating: 2773-o[1] Violence, offensive language and sexual references
Cast:
Simon Pegg as Gary King
Nick Frost as Andy Knightley
Paddy Considine as Steven Prince
Martin Freeman as Oliver Chamberlain
Eddie Marsan as Peter Page
Rosamund Pike as Sam Chamberlain
Director: Edgar Wright

20 years after attempting an epic pub crawl, five childhood friends reunite when one of them Gary King (Simon Pegg), becomes hell bent on trying the drinking marathon again and drags his reluctant pals to their home town and once again attempts to reach the fabled pub, The World’s End. As they attempt to reconcile the past and present, they realize the real struggle is for the future, not just theirs but humankind’s. Reaching The World’s End is the least of their worries as they discover that there’s something really unusual about the citizens that now inhabit the town, and as they hit each pub, another piece of the conspiracy unravels.

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The Cornetto trilogy (Which consists of Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz and now The World’s End) concludes with The World’s End. People who loved those two previous movies can rejoice; this movie is an excellent conclusion to this great trilogy. It gave me everything I wanted and expected (and sometimes what I didn’t expect) this movie to be. I loved every second of it and watching it for the first and second times are some of the most fun times I had watching a movie.

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The writing by Edgar Wright is typically entertaining and it really added a lot to the movie. An interesting thing is that I was engaged with this movie, even before the alien invasion plot point starts coming into play. The film from the beginning has your attention and never once loses it; there is never a dull or boring moment. The films in the Cornetto trilogy are quite clever and this film has well placed moments which foreshadow plot points. The comedy as usual is well done and the timing by the actors makes those scenes even more hilarious. Edgar Wright can write a lot of great comedy but he is also outstanding at writing character development and human drama between the characters. Towards the end, there were actually some unexpected emotional bits which are a pleasant surprise. Edgar Wright also writes great dialogue between characters; all of the actors should be credited for this.

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The actors also really shined in their roles. Simon Pegg stole every scene he was in; this is a character that he hasn’t really played in the other two movies and this just might be his best performance he’s given so far. Nick Frost is also excellent here and has a lot of great moments, especially with Simon Pegg. The rest of the cast which consist of Paddy Considine, Martin Freeman, Eddie Marsan and Rosamond Pike are also great in their roles here. The dialogue is delivered so well between the actors and they share great chemistry. The writing wouldn’t have come across to audiences if the actors weren’t able to deliver it to them; they do it here and succeed in their roles.

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The fight scenes are filmed spectacularly; the choreography that the actors have and the way the cinematography is handled is absolute perfection. There are a lot of fight scenes but the one that stands out to me and a lot of other people is the bathroom scene, I won’t say anything more about it, except that it’s in a bathroom. These scenes are edited very fast, as most Edgar Wright movies are, and are done extremely well.

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The World’s End is entertainment at its finest. When I was watching it I never wanted it to end. This movie is very fun but is also smart, and the whole trilogy is some of the most rewarding experiences you can have while watching a movie. This is one of those movies that can never get old for me. Watch it when you can, you won’t be disappointed.