Written by J.T. Johnson
After fighting off zombie hordes in “Shaun of the Dead” and an evil small town community in “Hot Fuzz”, Simon Pegg and director Edgar Wright take audiences to “The World’s End”. This particular movie makes up the final part in what Pegg and Wright refer to as the Cornetto Trilogy. Thankfully, the guys go off on a high note with another film that refuses to adhere to formula as they once again deliver their own brand of storytelling.
The movie opens with Gary King (Pegg), a troubled man who has decided to reunite his friends and head back to their hometown of Newton Haven. There, Gary, Andy Knightly (Nick Frost), Oliver Chamberlain (Martin Freeman), Steven Prince (Paddy Considine) and Peter Page (Eddie Marsan) are going to attempt the Golden Mile, a perilous pub crawl consisting of 12 pubs in the town ending at the last pub called The World’s End. Eventually, they soon realize that the town is overrun with life-like robots that have replaced most of the town’s population.
According to Gary’s logic, in order to avoid letting the robots notice that they know the citizens are not real, they should just complete the pub crawl and leave quietly the next morning. Since the other friends don’t have any better ideas, they agree to the plan. As they continue, things quickly escalate to an even more epic scale. The guys getting drunker along the way only seems to fuel their fighting spirit.
Pegg and Wright seem to always make a film that not only pays a comedic tribute to their favorite genres, but it ends up becoming a genuine addition to said genre. “Shaun” became another staple in the horror zombie subgenre and “Fuzz” became a memorable action film in its own right. With this one, the guys pay tribute to alien and sci-fi flicks including but not limited to “Invasion of the Body Snatchers”.
The movie is connected to “Shaun” and “Fuzz” thematically as the story once again deals with ordinary people being forced into extraordinary situations. What makes it all successful is that writers Pegg and Wright don’t mind dealing with real drama and action in addition to the humor. They know that they are making a comedic film, but they also know that it doesn’t mean just throwing in a bunch of jokes at the expense of the story.
When Gary and his friends are getting drunk or they’re reacting to something threatening, then the humor seems to naturally play out. However, if Andy is expressing his disappointment with Gary’s life choices, then the scene is not going to have very many laughs as they work out their drama. As with “Fuzz”, the film also contains a lot of solid action.
This is a movie that proves that Wright will probably have no trouble making the more action-packed “Ant Man” for Marvel. When the robots attack, the men have to often fight their way out and the choreography is spot on. The robots are more fluid fighters and in some cases, they even replace fallen body parts with other body parts causing some rather interesting fights to occur.
The performances from the cast are also great. In particular, it was great seeing Pegg and Frost reverse roles for a change. In this film, Pegg successfully plays the mid-life adult that can’t seem to grow up while Frost plays the more straight-laced character who has long since moved on from their childhood in Newton Haven.
To put it bluntly, Wright and Pegg have concluded their Cornetto Trilogy with a brilliant finale. Not only does the film stand up to “Shaun” and “Fuzz”, it is also a refreshing movie that makes up for a year at the movies that has been rather disappointing up to this point. If anyone sees one film this year, then they should take a trip to “The World’s End”.