You could say that the Cinematical team is excited about Hot Fuzz. But you would be making a terrible understatement. Erik and Scott are going to fight mano-a-mano for review privileges. Martha is probably re-watching all the Hot Fuzz video blogs on a daily basis as she counts down the days until April 13. As for me, I might actually need to fly to London next month for the earlier UK release date.

The major worry is that Hot Fuzz will not live up to the hype. After all, it is going to be pretty difficult for the movie to please all of us Shaun of the Dead fans. How many highly anticipated follow-ups have been met with disappointment? And how many have actually been as popular or more beloved than their predecessor? All we can do is try not to overdo it with our expectations and just try to enjoy the damn thing without any unreasonable demands.

Thankfully some early reviews are trickling onto the net, and so far they all seem to agree that if you like Shaun of the Dead, you'll also like Hot Fuzz. Only the first report, posted on Aint it Cool News last November, featured some slight criticisms, although the overall response there was great. Another person reacting from a more recent preview screening claims the movie will certainly be one of his top 10 of 2007 -- a strong claim from someone who also says he doesn't want to over-hype the thing.

There are some official reviews, too. However, one of them (from Channel 4) seems to be only a preview feature with quotes from Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. At least the quotes are good ("If the film doesn't make the police helmet cool, nothing will."). As for real film criticism, there's Wendy Ide's review from the Times of London. She says the script is, "crafted from the purest comedy gold," and, "the laughs don't let up until the final explosion is detonated."

In other exciting Hot Fuzz news, the Institute of Contemporary Arts is presenting the "Hot Fuzztival" from February 3 to 18. This showcase of action movies that inspired Hot Fuzz will feature two films by Tony Scott, who will be on hand for Q&As, in addition to other titles including Hard Boiled and Bad Boys II. I sure wish I could attend the sold out double-bill of Hot Fuzz and The Super Cops, which will feature Wright's DJ skills between films. Anybody scalping tickets?