This movie, I thought, had an unpromising premise: a spoof of cop thrillers, set in Britain. And the previews I caught on TV weren't especially funny: one gung-ho cop jumps over garden fences, followed by his out of shape partner who lumbers through them instead… ha?
But (fortunately) this is a movie that gets its laughs via character development and dialog rather than sight gags. (There are some sight gags, but not ones you can put on TV.) It is made by the same folks that put together the zombie spoof Shaun of the Dead. Simon Pegg, who played the hyperslacker-called-to-heroism Shaun in that movie, plays supercop Nick Angel in this one. His by-the-book devotion to law enforcement alienates his co-workers and girlfriend, so he gets shipped off to sleepy Sandford, where he proceeds to alienate nearly everyone there.
Timothy Dalton, one of my favorite James Bonds, has a huge amount of fun with his role as a seemingly sinister supermarket manager in Sandford.
As I type Hot Fuzz is number 142 on the IMDB's top 250 movies of all time. I wouldn't go that far—bit of ballot box stuffing going on there?—but it is pretty good. (As with all parodies, it helps to have seen a couple of the parodied movies.)