First off, despite what you might have heard, The Guard is nothing like In Bruges. It's got Brendan Gleeson in it and it's written and directed by In Bruges' director's brother, but that's it. In fact, it differs from In Bruges in one massive sense: The Guard is actually quite good.
On the surface it's about a vaguely amoral policeman - he's happy to snarf drugs from crime scenes and employ the services of prostitutes on his days off but he's the only honest plod in Galway - and an impending drug deal, but at its heart it's a razor-sharp look at xenophobia, where characters from all over the world fail to function properly because they simply don't understand anyone from another country / city / postcode. Italy, the US, Britain, Ireland and especially Dublin all appear incomprehensible to somebody at some point, as if Galway is the world's most diverse but dysfunctional melting pot.
It's not a wall-to-wall LOLgasm so much as a wry grinfest, with Gleeson playing the part of a man who may be a genius, an idiot or both, and doing it so well that a second viewing may be necessary to try and nail him down. The supporting cast are also spot-on, and special mention must go to Don Cheadle, who by day wears eye-wateringly beautiful suits as befits his deliberately stereotypical FBI agent character, but by night unleashes beasts like this:
That's the second food metaphor I've used to describe a film this week. If I do it again you have permission to hurt me.